When it comes to Florida estate planning, many people have heard about probate proceedings. Typically, clients, under the guidance of an experienced estate planning attorney, structure their estate plans to avoid such proceedings. Many people do not know, however, that even if you successfully prepare to avoid probate in your home state, any property you own outside of your state may be subject to a specific type of probate proceeding called ancillary probate. To help better inform you about this type of probate proceeding, let us share with you a few unexpected issues that can arise when it comes to ancillary probate.
First, many people will recommend that you put another person’s name on your accounts to avoid ancillary probate. Unfortunately, this can cause problems with your potential long-term care benefits and may even affect your relationships. To help avoid this, it is important to plan early and plan well under the guidance of an experienced estate planning attorney who knows the laws of your state.
Second, be cautious when using online legal documents. While it may seem appealing to use a cost-efficient online software to create your estate plan, unfortunately, this can give rise to many issues. Did you know, for example, that most online legal documents do not provide adequate asset protection and are likely to subject your estate plan to probate proceedings? We encourage you to consider this when creating your estate plan.
Finally, it is important to know that other states may have more favorable or negative tax treatment than your domicile state. When creating your estate plan, we encourage you to keep this in mind to help keep you and your assets protected. One of the most effective ways to avoid ancillary probate is to discuss your specific circumstances with an experienced estate planning attorney who knows the laws in your state. Further, do not forget to notify your estate planning attorney if you acquire any new property outside of your domicile state or are planning a move in the near future after creating your estate plan.
We know ancillary probate can be a complicated area, and these are just a few unexpected issues that may arise. If you have questions about anything discussed in this article, or if you are ready to start your planning, do not wait to contact us to set up an appointment so we can help you create the right plan for you.