The Unvarnished Truth – Your Default Estate Plan | Rogers Estate Planning Attorney
If you haven’t created an estate plan, you still have an estate plan!
This is the unvarnished, cold, hard truth of the legal system of probate and estate administration and how it affects you. To prepare you for what lies ahead.
Yes, you do have an estate plan, the state of Arkansas has written it for you already…It’s called “intestate succession” and “guardianship.” Both involve your family and/or you suffering through the hassles of court and judicial intervention.
During your lifetime, if you are incapacitated, in order to manage your affairs, your family will have to go to court to seek a guardianship. That is, they ask a judge to rip your rights away and take over your decisions and life. Your rights to make financial, legal, and medical decisions.
After your lifetime, your family will face the seemingly endless hassles of the court system in “intestate succession.” This is a form of probate and administration when you didn’t leave a last will and testament. Your family ends up in court to divide up your belongings and property. It takes at least 6 months to get done (because of legal requirements), and in the meantime, the money and property is tied up. The lawyer gets paid first from your probate estate.
Your probate estate is divided up like this:
- Your children split the probate real estate subject to a 1/3rd life estate of your spouse. If you are not married, your children split the probate real estate.
- Your spouse doesn’t get the probate real estate outright.
- Your children get 2/3 of the other property, like money, of your estate and your spouse 1/3.
- If you aren’t married and don’t have children, there is a table to look up who gets your stuff in the statutes.
But, there is a solution!
You can create your own plan to replace the State’s plan!