How can I leave money, house without going through probate or pay taxes? - AgingCare.com

How can I leave money, house without going through probate or pay taxes?

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This is as clear as I can be to avoid probate court.

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The Unified Federal Estate and Gift Tax only applies to estates valued over $5 million.
Georgia (where you say you are from) does not have an estate or inheritance tax.
So, presuming the estate we are talking about is valued under $5 million there is no tax issue at death.
Probate can be avoided by several methods; sometimes dependent on the nature of the asset. For instance, IRA's and life insurance pass by beneficiary and free of probate if a person or persons other than "the estate of" is named. Bank accounts held jointly also avoid probate. Lastly, assets titled in the name of a living trust (and many other forms of trust) will similarly avoid probate.
Any asset held solely by an individual will be probated.
So, depending on the asset and how you wish to handle it the involvement of an attorney may, in fact, not be necessary.
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For bank accounts have them either joint accounts with full right of survivorship OR have it as an individual accounts but POD (pay on death) to whomever named in the banking account document. Anything POD does not go to probate.

If you like savings bonds, you can put $ there. Savings bonds can be in two names and only 1 of the person named is needed to be able to cash them out. I was execturix for an aunt who loved, loved giving savings bonds. At the time of her death, there were many that still out there and not cashed in. Most because they still had time on them (30 year bonds). The probate judge said all were excluded from her estate as the other person on the bond was the owner.

For a home, well this is sticky. As others have said, you can set up a trust.

But if if you think that the deceased will have or has no debts or anything that could, would, should need to go probate to settle, and all they have is a home and maybe a car, then in many states you can do a MUNIMENT OF TITLE to transfer the property via to whomever named in the will. Imho, this is totally do-able for an individual to handle. It will cost about $ 250.00 to do a muniment in Texas.

“Muniment of title” is pretty straightforward. Instead of applying for letters testamentary and undertaking a full probate procedure, a person with a direct interest in the estate can submit an application to probate the will as a "muniment of title" to enable the transfer of real estate and/or personal property from the decedent’s estate, and there is no other real need to manage the estate via probate.

For those of us who have parents on Medicaid, this may work as their assets are @ or below 2K except for their homestead. So "estate" to deal with.To do it, there must be a will and no unpaid debts owed, except for liens on real estate. If they were on Medicaid/Medicare, all medical would be taken care of. If they had a funeral / burial policy, then no debts there either. If MERP (Medicaid estate recovery) declines to persue a claim or lein, you get a release from MERP on that. Muniment could totally work.

To proceed with a muniment of title, a direct beneficiary of the will needs to submit a simple application to the probate court, and attach the original will and pay the fee for muniment hearing (in TX about $ 250.00). The court must be satisfied that the will is admissible, that there are no debts, and there is no other necessity for administration of the estate via probate. A hearing will be required. If the court approves the application, it will issue an Order Admitting Will As A Muniment of Title. The court’s order can be presented to persons owing money to the estate or having custody of estate property, and the property must be handed over to the beneficiaries in accordance with the terms of the will. You go to the courthouse with the courts order and change the ownership of the property. Within 180 days after the will is admitted, you file an affidavit with the probate clerk stating that the terms of the decedent’s will have been fulfilled as per a muniment.

A muniment of title proceeding can be a quick and cost-effective. Not all states allow for it though. But if yours does and you feel OK in going to the courthouse and dealing with paperwork, it can work and cost very little.
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You will need to set up a trust. You'll need to go to an attorney to do this.
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