Non-probate assets are those assets which do not go into an estate when the owner dies.
Even those who have saved and invested well may not be sharing their financial information with a spouse or loved one. It’s time to do that now.
Children may have moved away or lost touch. Old contacts may have died or become disabled. You cannot trust everyone and criminal cases based on misuse of a power of attorney do exist.
For larger estates, a revocable trust is generally the most effective tool for avoiding probate. It involves some setup costs. However, it allows you to manage the disposition of all of your wealth in one document, while retaining control and reserving the right to modify your plan.
If you’ve had an IRA and a 401(k) for many years, you may occasionally ask yourself some questions: ‘Am I contributing enough?’ ‘Am I still funding these accounts with the right mix of investments for my goals and risk tolerance?
Most people wish to have more control over who and how their assets are managed than what the state laws provide, and so they draft documents that can override the Laws of Intestacy, when those laws do not match their objectives.