Proper probate and/or trust administration ensures the optimal benefit of all lifetime planning efforts and the minimization of income, estate and generation-skipping taxes which may apply upon death. Although it’s often assumed that the tax and estate planning process ends at death, this is not the case. Numerous choices and elections must be considered and made as part of the estate and trust settlement effort; and these can have an enormous impact on the immediate and future tax obligations facing the estate and its beneficiaries. A great depth of knowledge and experience is needed to optimize these choices, thereby minimizing the federal and state income, estate and generation-skipping taxes that may otherwise be owed.
Strict compliance with the law’s requirements both within the context of probate and in death settlement of trusts is critical. The duties and liabilities of the acting fiduciaries, i.e., the personal representatives or the trustees, are significant. These rules exist to protect the interests of all of the beneficiaries, and even the potential creditors of an estate or trust. Failure to adhere to the law’s requirements can create legal liability for the fiduciary, and even cause irreparable family strife. The Law Offices of John A. Williams, PLLC is committed to the proper administration of estates and trusts on behalf of its clients and their intended beneficiaries.