Trusts and Estates Attorney Helping You Plan for Your Family and Your Legacy
Preserving wealth and protecting assets for future generations
For years, you’ve worked day in and day out to build security for your family. What happens to all of your hard-earned money, though, when you pass on? The Law Offices Of Michael T. Sawyier can help you determine the best way to manage your estate and your assets while alive to ensure when you’re no longer with us, your wishes are followed.
You work hard for your family, so knowing that you have planned for their long-term well-being and financial security can bring you comfort. We thoroughly analyze your estate and strategize the best means of transferring your assets, minimizing taxes, establishing guardianship for your children, caring for your pets, supporting personal philanthropic causes and protecting your loved ones.
A will as part of the estate plan
Every estate plan should include a will. If the value of the estate is small, then a simple will may suffice to transfer your assets. If the value of the estate is larger and real estate is involved, it is probably better to have your assets held in trust and have a pour-over will as a backup. This can accomplish many different goals, such as avoiding probate, lowering estate taxes, and directing the distribution of your property upon your death. If you die with assets outside of the trust, the pour-over will directs the assets to pour into the trust and be distributed in accordance with the trust’s directions.
Our firm also assists with the changes your estate plan may require as your life changes. You may need to update your will — either by creating a new will or adding a codicil — throughout your life.
What does a trust do?
There are two basic types of trusts: revocable and irrevocable. A revocable trust can be altered during the life of the grantor (the person who creates the trust). The assets held in a revocable trust at the decedent’s death are subject to the estate tax. Conversely, an irrevocable trust generally cannot be altered after you create it. The assets held in an irrevocable trust at the decedent’s death are not generally subject to the estate tax.
For larger estates, Chesterton, Indiana's Law Offices Of Michael T. Sawyier has experience in using valuation discounts and other tax-advantaged gifting strategies allowed by the Internal Revenue Service. We use specialized trusts and limited liability entities to accomplish this goal.
Executors and administrators
While our firm can help you develop an estate plan, we also assist executors and administrators in the probate process after a person dies. Probate is the judicial proceeding required to transfer title to the deceased’s heirs or beneficiaries under a will. If you are named as the executor by the terms of the will or would like to become the administrator of the estate of a family member who did not have a will, our firm can help you to become appointed by the probate court. We can also assist you in all subsequent probate court matters and procedures until the closing of the estate.
Estate planning, trusts and wills prepared by tax-savvy lawyers
No matter the size of your property or estate, preparing in advance can ensure that your family and loved ones need not worry about court proceedings after you’re gone. The Law Offices Of Michael T. Sawyier can assist and guide you through this process. Contact us today online or by telephone at 855-402-5961. We serve clients throughout Indiana, Illinois and Michigan and look forward to helping you plan for the future.