At Wilkinson Legal, or attorneys have experience in all aspects of estate planning, including Estate, Trust and After-Death Planning We understand your needs estate planning range from basic estate plans to complex estate planning, tax and administration issue, and we are ready to help with all your needs.
Reliable Utah attorneys protect your assets and secure your legacy
Wilkinson Legal PLLC. provides dependable estate planning services to all Northern Utah clients. We have had the satisfaction of helping clients preserve their wealth and pass it on to their heirs as a testimony of their love. We have also shared in the frustration and anxiety of clients who have asked us to probate an estate with an inadequate plan or no plan at all.
Naturally, we prefer to avoid unnecessary complications and expenses through sound planning, rather than struggle to salvage assets that might easily be lost. We are ready and able to assist new clients looking for the most beneficial way to structure their assets. Our estate planning attorneys provide highly personalized services tailored to your needs.
Putting the tools in place to help ensure the best future for you and your family.
Effective estate plans usually involve more than just the development of wills. The experienced estate planning lawyers at Wilkinson Legal PLLC. work closely with you to review your unique personal and financial circumstances. Then, we create a customized plan that includes the appropriate tools to protect you and your family, including the following:
- Trusts. Even though wills identify the intended recipients for your assets, these documents go through a probate process, which can potentially remove available assets before distribution to your heirs. You may be able to reduce the effects of probate on your estate by placing some or all of your assets into trusts. Although you retain control of the assets, the trusts essentially become the legal owner of the assets, thus removing them from probate concerns. Although there are many benefits to setting up trusts, they require regular maintenance. Your estate planning lawyer at Wilkinson Legal PLLC. can help you decide if this option makes sense for you.
- Powers of attorney. It is vital to identify one or more individuals you trust to handle your financial and medical situations in the event you become incapacitated. Powers of attorney can give limited responsibilities to certain individuals, but they can also designate the people who can make vital decisions on your behalf. We educate you on the differences between a durable, general and special power of attorney so you can assign responsibilities appropriately.
- Health care directives. While a “living will” expresses your choices about the use of life-sustaining treatment in the event of a terminal condition, you also need a medical power of attorney to designate an individual you trust to make decisions regarding treatment in the event that illness or injury prevents you from making these decisions for yourself.
An estate plan requires you to develop an accurate accounting of your assets, a review of the people in your life whom you want to protect and the individuals you trust to handle your affairs as needed. We guide you through every step to make this complex process clear, efficient and easy to maintain.
Reducing your tax burden through estate planning
There has been much debate about the fairness of our tax code, and it is important to know that this debate has real consequences. Our law firm can minimize the taxes your heirs will pay through legal instruments, such as an irrevocable life insurance trust. We can match plans to meet your needs to ensure that your beneficiaries receive the inheritance to which they are entitled.
Necessary safeguards for the next generation
Many of our clients find themselves situated between, and caring for, their aging parents and their growing children. This double duty makes it that much more important to plan for every eventuality. Wilkinson Legal PLLC. empowers you to care for your dependents with instruments such as a living will, durable power of attorney and medical power of attorney. We also safeguard those who depend on you, with plans for elderly or disabled adults to avoid expensive guardianship proceedings.
Careful legacy planning to reduce the tax burden for you and your heirs
More often than not, bestowing a lump-sum inheritance is the most expensive way to pass on wealth. To maximize your legacy, Wilkinson Legal PLLC. creates trusts — legal entities that hold and distribute your assets. Your trust lessens the tax burden on your estate and your beneficiaries. The trust administrator also manages those assets, so financially unsophisticated heirs are protected and funds are used only for the purposes you’ve selected.
Wilkinson Legal PLLC. uses a variety of trusts for estate planning and tax purposes, including:
Living trust: control your assets and avoid probate
With a living trust, you can enjoy your assets during your lifetime and then pass them on to your heirs. But unlike a will, a trust doesn’t go through probate, so your heirs get their inheritance more quickly. A living trust does take more time to construct than a will and requires ongoing management, but for many of our clients, the advantages outweigh the inconveniences. Wilkinson Legal PLLC. can help you decide if a living trust is right for you.
Special needs trust: safeguarding vulnerable loved ones
A special needs trust provides financial support for your heirs whose mental or physical limitations make it impossible for them to care for themselves. Our Utah estate planning lawyers can structure the trust so its funds don’t render your loved one ineligible for government benefits like Social Security Disability or Medicaid.
QTIP trust: providing for surviving spouse and children
In this day and age, divorce, remarriage and the blending of families have created circumstances that traditional inheritance laws don’t adequately address. A qualified terminable interest property (QTIP) trust is often desirable for a grantor whose spouse is not the parent of his children. With a QTIP trust, a grantor provides trust benefits for the surviving spouse without the property ever becoming theirs. So when the grantor passes on, the property will not go to the children, but will be distributed according to the grantor’s plan, thus protecting their own children.
Find out how a trust can assist your tax and estate planning
Protecting your interest in your loved one’s estate
When you’ve lost a loved one, you don’t want confusion and frustration added on top of your grief. If you have the responsibility of seeing your loved one’s estate through the Utah probate court, you need an experienced attorney — one who knows Utah law and is familiar with the court procedure. Wilkinson Legal PLLC. has the necessary experience to expedite the probate process for estates of all sizes, with or without wills.