Many people know it is critical to have a will—and sometimes a trust—as part of their overall estate plan. However, they may not know that there are different types of wills that can be utilized, depending on the person’s financial and personal situation. One of the more unique options is a pour over will. A pour over will works in combination of a trust, assisting the transfer of assets if the person who established the trust—called a grantor—did not transfer all the assets they wanted into the trust. Because pour over wills are a new concept for many, below are common questions and explanations about pour over wills.
How Does a Pour Over Will Work?
A pour over will functions after an individual has already created a trust and funded the trust—meaning, they have placed certain assets in the trust to be given to beneficiaries after their death in order to avoid the probate court process. However, as people tend to acquire more assets after the creation of the trust—and they may forget or not have the time to place these assets in the trust too—a pour over will can ensure these assets are still placed in the trust. A pour over will allows the grantor of the trust to state that any assets not previously added in the trust should be included upon the grantor’s death. These assets would then be treated the same as those initially added to the trust.
What Are Some Benefits and Drawbacks of a Pour Over Will?
One benefit of a pour over will is it reduces the complications that arise from having to go to probate court. When a person has not accounted for an asset—either in a trust or in a will generally—the probate court process can be elongated as a judge decides who should receive the item. Having a pour over will and ensuring all assets are placed in a trust removes the complications of having to decide which beneficiary receives certain assets, as all assets are distributed per the terms of the trust. Especially for assets acquired soon before the grantor passes away, having a pour over will makes sure that the intended beneficiary still receives this too.
However, the state laws governing pour over wills vary state-by-state, so it is critical for individuals to reach out to an experienced estate planning attorney in their state who can advise them on the relevant laws.
Contact a Boulder Estate Planning Attorney
If you or a loved one is interested in creating a pour over will, contact the Boulder estate planning attorneys at the Braverman Law Group. With years of experience, our estate planning attorneys can work with you to solve your estate planning needs—be it creating an estate plan, altering your current plan to include a pour over will, or discussing other estate planning strategies. Estate planning should not be another stressful addition to life, so we are here to reduce the anxiety surrounding this process. To schedule a free, no-obligation consultation and to speak with one of our attorneys, give us a call at (303) 800-1588 today.