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Estate Planning

Disposition Of Assets

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  • Everyone should have a Will. 
    • If you do not have a will, the state determines what happens to your assets. See: Wills 101
    • If you communicate with your heirs about what will happen with you assets, there will more likely be peace after you're gone and for your wishes to be carried out as desired See: Communicating Your Desires And Estate Plans and Heir Game Plan.
  • To avoid Probate, there are "Will substitutes" to consider (in addition to having a Will). Will substitutes can help speed transfer of your assets and minimize the cost. They also assure privacy if that is important to you. (Probate records are generally open to the public.) See: How to Avoid Probate (Will Substitutes) and Trusts 101.
  • Consider writing a document known as an Ethical Will which passes on your values and life experiences to your heirs. See: Ethical Wills.
  • If you're lucky enough to have so many assets that your estate would be subject to an estate tax, see: Gift, Estate and Generation-Skipping Transfer Taxes.

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