If you are experienced in running your business, you understand
the importance of getting the correct corporate form in place. You
should seek to have a structure that will not only aid long term
expansion but also protect your assets. The good news - there are a lot
of potential forms your business can take.
You should consider, if
you have a small business, forming an LLC. Think about setting up an
LLC if you have a small business. Fortunately, they are simple to
create. There is little paperwork with them. Further, in many states,
you won't need to file an annual report.
Also, LLC forms a
business structure that can protect your personal assets. Just keep you
LLC compliant and your personal property is protected.
LLC, you can safe guard your business name.Also, LLCs allow unlimited
owners. This will help give your business growth room. Also, owners
don't need to have US citizenship.
In addition, an LLC doesn't
require meetings. It also needs little paperwork. And you can flow your
profit and loss to your personal taxes.
Keep in mind that setting
up an LLC has fees and paperwork. Also, you need to make sure you are
following all city and state laws. Thus, only consider an LLC if you
have a clear business plan.
Overall, an LLC is great for small
business. So you should at least consider one if you are serious about
your business. Remember, it can save you time and money, both of which
you can invest in your business!
If you own a business or have shares in a family company then you
should consider making a Will. The following are some of the reasons
why making a Will for business owners is so important.
first reason is the fact you can select appropriate executors and
trustees, who will be responsible for ensuring the running of the
business after your death. Unlike funds in the bank, where management
can be fairly minimal, your executors will almost certainly need to
ensure the business is kept running in the short term until more long
decisions can be taken.
For even the smallest business, your
executor's job is to ensure that your financial obligations are met,
this can include dealing with tax issues, employees and your business
accounts. Failing to do so could have a detrimental effect on the value
of the business and therefore mean your family lose out financially. So
while your may ultimately want your spouse or children to inherit, if
they are not going to be the appropriate executors then you can appoint
executors who have the business skills to carry out the executor's
2. The second reason is that by drafting your
Will, you can take advantage of the tax breaks offered for business
property. There are ways in which the Will can be prepared to ensure
that not only do you pass your business to the people you want to
inherit, but you do so in a way that limits your total inheritance tax
bill as well.
3. The third reason is for making a Will is so that
you define exactly how your executors can act. By making a Will, you are
able to ensure that your executors have all the necessary powers and
authorities they will need to carry on your business and run it
correctly. Without a Will, your estate may end up in a position where
decisions or steps that are needed to ensure the survival of the
business cannot be taken when they need to be. This could mean either a
lucrative business opportunity is missed or that an expensive Court
application is needed. Either way the result is detrimental to your
4. The final reason for making a Will is to ensure that
your interest in the business passes in the way that you want. So for
example if you have that children assist in the business while others do
not, you can draft your Will to take this into account.
therefore decide to ensure that your children who are involved in your
business inherit the shares, while the others take cash or other assets.
Doing this ensures both a fairness in the way your children are dealt
with, but also means that your children who do take a role in the
business will not to lose their livelihood following your death.
Additionally it means that they will not be forced to sell the business
to pay their siblings, a move which may mean they also lose out
If you own a business then making a Will really is
something to consider very seriously. The time and effort you have spent
in building your business, and its value to it may not be properly
passed to your family if you do not make a Will.
Probate is the legal process that settles the property of the
deceased person and tells how it should be equally distributed among the
heirs and beneficiaries in case there is no will. The rules and
regulations of probate vary form state to state and each state can have a
different procedure and hearing process for probate. Some general
guidance might be similar in most states but it is always advised to
take help of a legal advisor in case you need to understand the probate
process in your locality. Moreover you should understand that every
probate case is different depending on the amount of money involved in
it. The different property, debts and people involved in it make the
whole case different from one other. There is no way that the rules and
results of one probate case can apply to other case. Normally people
have a view point that probate can be an ugly scene but the fact is that
it can be easy if all parties involved in it work together for a
positive outcome and preserve the memory of the deceased person.
most cases, the property of the deceased person is transferred to his
spouse if the person has not made any will before his expiry but in some
conditions due to the parties' involved the property cannot be
transferred to the spouse directly. The probate court which hears the
matter of probate cases will get involved if there any issues relating
to the property of the deceased person. The case has to go through a
legal framework and the final order of the court has to be addressed by
each person involved in the case. Now, since every state has different
law regarding the probate so the hearings of the case in the court can
be different in each state.
If the deceased person has a will and
has named a representative,all the assets will be handled by this person
unless the judge deems this person unfit, etc.If there is no
representative named in the will then the court appoints a
representative who handles the property unless the decision is made. The
appointed representative is called the administrator and has sole
responsibility of handling the property.
The Probate Process
In the initial phase the administrator
opens the case in the court. During this period he evaluates the
property and collects all the property of the deceased person. Few items
which come under contract of the deceased person are not held in
probate and they pass automatically to the beneficiary. Any bank
accounts or other things which has the clause of "payable on death" are
transferred to the person named in the contract. Only those limited
property that have no clear beneficiaries are accountable for probate
process. After accumulating all the property, the administrator sends a
legal notice to all parties involved in the case and pays all the debts
and claims which remain outstanding on the deceased name. Then the
administrator distributes the remaining property to the beneficiaries of
the decedent as instructed in the court's verdict.
If there are
any disputes during the process then the court hearing decided upon the
matter and the final verdict has to be agreed upon by every parties
involved in the probate process. Anyone can file the claim on the
property and if the court declines the claim then the opponent can file
lawsuit to claim the property. If the lawsuit is made then court has to
take the case more formally and this is when major problems occur during
the probate process.
Normally, probate process take a longer time
and if the amount involved is huge then the process can be more
problematic. But if all the parties involved work together to make a
positive solution then probate process can be competed easily and the
property is distributed equally among the heirs or beneficiaries.
Rene at By the People talks about Deeds of trust and how they can help people make the necessary changes to their title for a number of different reasons. Call 707-428-9871 with any questions, and visit the website at http://www.bythepeopleca.com
A will is a legal document that outlines what one would want to happen after their death in terms of their funeral, care for their children and most important of all, distribution of their estate. When a person dies having drafted their will, they are said to have died testate in legal terms. The opposite of this would be dying intestate. A will usually specifically states the name of an executor, a person entrusted by the testator or testatrix with the task of executing the will after their death. An executor could be a close family member, a relative, trusted friend or even an attorney. An executor is usually referred to as a 'representative of the estate in probate' in a will in order to cover executors of both gender.
A will is very important because it makes things a lot easier for the family of a deceased person especially when it comes to estate distribution issues. A will reduces the possibility of disagreement or misunderstanding between family members when trying to figure out the deceased's death wishes. Administering a will is however not as easy as it may sound. This is because the law requires wills to be validated by a court which could take a couple of months to do. Validation of a will is done by the executor by applying for a Grant of Probate in a probate court.
Probate is the legal process of identifying, validating and distributing the estate of a deceased person under strict court supervision. The probate process includes payment of outstanding debts to creditors and payment of outstanding taxes such as death and inheritance tax. A probate court is a special court that interprets the will and validates any claims on the estate made by third parties such as the creditors of the deceased. The court oversees the probate process right from when the executor files for a grant of probate, up to when it is granted and ownership of the estate is transferred to the beneficiaries.
For the executor of a will to be granted probate, they will have to first present to the probate court registry, the deceased's will and a solicitor approved oath. The oath shows that the executor is committed to administering the wishes stated by the deceased in the will. The executor named in the will is usually not recognized by the law until the probate court officially appoints them as the representative of the estate in probate.
If a will was properly drafted, it takes the court a shorter time to grant probate. Incase the beneficiaries are not completely satisfied with the court's decision, probate law allows them to contest the validity of the will in the same court. In such a case the estate remains frozen until the court makes a validity judgment. In the event of intestate death, or if there is no executor is named in a will, the grant of probate is referred to as a 'Letter of Administration'. It is also acquired through a court process and is issued to the person that the court deems fittest to execute the will or distribute the estate.
What you should be asking yourself is: "Can I Afford Not to Do It?"
may be asking yourself whether you can really afford to do the
effective estate planning that you know needs to be done. That's not the
question to ask. The real question is whether you and your family can
afford to be without the protection and security that the right planning
Would you drive without car insurance? How would you feel without the protection that liability and property coverage offers??
Would you leave your home uninsured?
Would you go without health insurance, knowing that any major medical bills could wipe you out?
the case of the car, home, and health insurance, you're protecting
against the possibility of something happening. If an insured event
occurs, then your insurance will cover you, and the premiums you paid
for the insurance will be more than worth it.
Estate planning is
protecting against the possibility that you might become incapacitated
during your lifetime, and the certainty that you will pass away one day.
So what protection and security does the right kind of planning provide? Protecting You if You Become Incapacitated.
If you become incapacitated and need help managing your financial
affairs and your medical care, the people you want helping you will need
the proper legal documents in order to have the authority to act for
you. Protecting Your Loved Ones. The right kind of estate planning will protect your loved ones from any of the following:
Creditors - whether they have creditor problems now, or some that arise in the future.
Predators - people who would take advantage of them after they receive an inheritance from you.
Poor Financial Judgment - sometimes our loved ones just aren't good at handling money.
Loss of Benefits - if you have a loved one with Special Needs, then having the right plan will protect their continuing benefits.
Family Feuds - Unfortunately, when your planning is
not done correctly, horrible feuds can arise between family members,
even among siblings who previously got along.
Divorce Loss - if one of your loved ones got
divorced, would you want their ex-spouse to receive half of their
inheritance? Without proper planning, that can happen.
Blended Families - in families where there are
children from other marriages, then the right estate planning will
protect against one side of the family being inadvertently disinherited.
Protecting Your Assets. The right
planning will protect your assets from unnecessary expenses, and the
potential for loss from creditors or a nursing home spend-down.
Probate Expense - If your estate goes through
Probate, then your family will pay a much higher cost to administer your
estate. The attorney fee to pay in Probate is calculated as a
percentage of your assets, starting as high as 4.5%. For example, in
Lucas County, the attorney fee for probating a $400,000 estate (gross
value) would be $15,000. With the right planning, that cost could be
significantly reduced, resulting in savings of up to $11,000!
Creditors or Long Term Care Spend Down. If you're
concerned about the potential for losing your savings to a nursing home,
and if long term care insurance is not an option for you, then the
right kind of estate planning can help protect a large portion of your
assets and preserve them for your loved ones.
Happily ever after is not always the case when it comes to being married. Often times married couples have a hard time and need to have a break from each other for one reason or the other. It is amazing how many marriages actually end in divorce. However, before you make the decision to get a divorce it is important to know all the facts and options before making a choice. You need to look at legal separation vs divorce when choosing the right one to fit your needs. First let us look at and distinguish the differences.
Legal separation is similar to a legal divorce however there are notable differences that need to be taken into account. A legal separation does not permanently dissolve a marriage, it is something that can be temporary if so desired. There are some couples that just need time apart from one another and living separately is the answer.
A legal separation occurs when the two parties are living separately and it has been filed through the court system. Do not mistake a legal separation for a separation. A separation is not filed with the courts and does not carry the same provisions as a legal separation. Much like a divorce, a couples assets, property and child custody are addressed via a legal separation agreement which is filed with the courts. A separation does not provide provisions and is based solely on verbal agreements. Living separately is mainly used to determine if separating is really what a couple wants to do. There is not paperwork or filing with the courts in the case of a separation.
A legal separation is mainly different from a divorce in the fact that the couple is still legally married. There are benefits to living separately instead of immediately filing for a divorce. A divorce terminates the marriage and any and all joint interest the couple may share. A living separately does not terminate the interest however it does divide the interest. Another benefit of a living separately is the couple can still take advantage of the tax advantages of being married, they can also continue with joint insurance coverage.
Once legally separated can be canceled at any time and the marriage returned to its original status. If a couple automatically proceeds with a divorce when there is a chance for reconciliation, the couple would have to get re-married. If there is any possibility of a reconciliation a legal separation is the way to go. It gives you the time to decide if being separated permanently is what you really want.
The statistics show that 50% of first time marriages end in divorce, especially for individuals under the age of 40. This may not be surprising to many of you because it is a sad but true fact. It seems to be a quick fix for many troubled marriages. Maybe if more people know there were other alternatives to divorce, no so many divorces would be happening. There are times when all a troubled marriage needs is a little time and reflection for both parties to see that they truly were meant to be together.
Whether you choose to have a divorce or get legally separated, it is highly recommended that you obtain legal counsel. Both a legal separation and divorce require filings to be made in the courts. A divorce also requires a reason for the divorce whereas a legal separation does not require any reasoning. Do not take for granted the different options afforded to you, sometimes making decisions quickly and while in an irritated or frustrated state is rash. Divorce and separation are not games, they are serious matters and need to be viewed as such.
Divorce is not something anyone wants to experience but there are times when the only alternative to a bad marriage is divorce. Whether you decide to have a full blown divorce or give a legal separation a try, it is important to find out all the details and facts before making a decision. Each state and country have different rules and prerequisites that apply for both legal separations and divorce. This is one of the most important decisions you will make; therefore, make it wisely.