A last will and testament is probably the most common form of estate planning. A last will and testament is typically a type-written document singed in-front of a Notary Public stating your wishes regarding disbursement of assets. Wills allow you to:
A last will and testament serves to establish basic guidelines for asset distribution. To execute a last will and testament, your Executor must complete the probate process. In the DFW metroplex, the average probate case takes about 6 months to complete and costs about $10,000 in court, attorney, accounting and appraisal fees. In Dallas County, an attorney MUST represent the Executor before the court.
Completion of the probate process is often impeded by familial disagreement. Did you know that each time a beneficiary raises a dispute, the probate process stops and a hearing before a judge takes place to resolve the issue. Establishing a trust may help prevent such disputes.