Grand Rapids Estate Planning Attorneys
Detail Oriented Attorneys: Planning for the Future; Assuring an Orderly Transition
Estate administration in Michigan must follow the Estates and Protected Individuals Code [EPIC]. Wills, Health Care Directives, and Trusts all have their place in assuring the orderly transfer of wealth within a family.
At Scozzari Graham, PLLC, we examine your needs and propose solutions that provide you with the peace of mind you need.
Wills vs. Trusts in Michigan
A Will is a legal document which codifies the author’s wishes as to how their property will be distributed after their death and who is to manage the process of distribution. It becomes active upon death. If someone dies without a will, Michigan’s intestacy rules apply.
A Trust is a legal entity in which the title to property is entrusted, with a trustee named to hold and use that property for the benefit of another. There are different types of trusts, some that can be modified or revoked until death, others that become operational immediately.
The Probate Procedure
Michigan requires that estates be probated, and has special courts called probate courts which administer that procedure. After the death of a loved one, an estate is usually opened, a final tax return is filed on behalf of the deceased, and the property is distributed to the heirs.
Small estates are handles differently than large ones, with an abbreviated probate procedure, but the process must nevertheless take place. Papers must be filed with the probate court, including proof of whether or not the deceased had a will, a verified copy of the death certificate, and an inventory of personal property among other things. All interested parties must be notified. Debts of the estate must be paid.
Our experienced estate attorneys at Scozzari Graham write Wills, create Trusts, and open, administer and close estates. Let us do the legal work, help you plan for your future, and take over the burden of dealing with the court system during an otherwise trying time.
Work with Scozzari Graham, PLLC on Your Estate
It is advisable to work with an experienced lawyer if you have legal questions about estate planning matters, from determining whether to draft a will or trust, examining the terms of a will and trust, or navigating the informal probate procedure. Certain legal nuances or complications could arise in the language of a will or trust, and probate procedures can be confusing to navigate without an experienced professional. Our lawyers at Scozzari Graham, PLLC have significant experience in estate planning in Grand Rapids and provide you the legal guidance you need in the process.