Estate Planning Journal: Just A Will Won’t Cut It: Planning for the Transfer of Non-Probate Assets at Death (February 10, 2022)

Arielle M. Prangner, of the Estate Planning Journal, has made available for download her article “Just A Will Won’t Cut It: Planning for the Transfer of Non-Probate Assets at Death”, published in the Estate Planning Journal. The abstract is as follows:

When crafting a comprehensive estate plan for clients, planning for and

coordinating assets that pass outside of probate is an imperative part of the

process.1 Most clients’ estates include non-probate assets; in fact, the make up the majority of the value of a client’s gross

estate.3 Accordingly, attorneys must advise clients to incorporate these assets

into the estate plan, and not just as an afterthought.4

Obviously, attorneys must ascertain each client’s personal goals

concerning the overall estate plan in order to determine the ultimate

disposition of the client’s non-probate assets.5 The attorney must then

identify and analyze each non-probate asset and educate the client regarding

how each asset should be distributed at the client’s death.6 The paperwork

involved in directing the disposition of non-probate assets can sometimes be

daunting.7 The forms required are as varied as the financial institutions, life

insurance companies, plan administrators, and plan custodians involved.8

This Article is not intended to address every issue associated with the

coordination of non-probate assets with the rest of the estate plan.9 In

particular, the nuances of the income tax and distribution considerations

involved in the disposition of retirement plans are not addressed.10 Rather,

the goals of this Article are to highlight issues that may influence the

suggested disposition of non-probate assets, to assist in the identification of

non-probate assets that may not be easily recognizable, and to provide

guidance about how to manage some of the paperwork involved.11

To read the full article, click: “Just A Will Won’t Cut It: Planning for the Transfer of Non-Probate Assets at Death”

Posted by Marin Larkin, Associate Editor, Wealth Strategies Journal.

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