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Making estate administration easier for surviving family members

More than likely, Illinois residents do not want to have to pay any more in taxes than absolutely necessary. This also applies to estate taxes, which is seen as a primary motivator for estate planning. Since most people do not have an estate large enough to worry about estate taxes, they may not think that having a plan is necessary. However, many other reasons exist for having a plan in place, and one of those reasons is to make estate administration easier for surviving family members.

Most Illinois residents want to protect and provide for their spouses, children and possibly even their grandchildren. The only way to ensure that those family members receive the assets an individual intends for each of them to have is through estate planning. This can be done in a variety of ways, depending on the situation.

Beneficiary designation forms, wills and trusts are often the primary vehicles for passing on assets after death. A well-crafted plan could not only provide family members with the assurances they need for peace of mind, but could also make the probate process easier. The time and money an individual spends prior to death saves loved ones time and money after death.

Estate administration can be a complex process under the best of circumstances. Having no plan at all in place only further complicates matters and leaves room for family members to argue over an estate, which could cause irreparable harm to familial relationships. Simplifying the process for them by taking the appropriate steps now could be a final gift to loved ones.

Source: pilotonline.com, "Make estate planning a priority this year | Expert column", John T. Midgett, Jan. 17, 2018

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