Wills, Estates and Trusts in Texas: What You Should Know

Two people shaking hands in the background with the words What You Should Know About Wills, Estates, and Trusts in TexasWhen it comes to your family’s welfare, your first thought may be to secure car and health insurance, home security systems, or a first aid kit. But there is another security issue that often gets overlooked: what happens when you pass away? You want to be sure that you leave your loved ones taken care of with nothing to worry about. Whether that means you know how your estate will be handled or that the items you have set aside for certain people get to them, these things should be addressed ahead of time. If this is a nagging concern of yours, there are some steps you can take to ensure that everything is set up for when you are gone. Knowing the law and teaming up with a trusted attorney are the best ways to ensure that your wills, estates, and trusts are taken care of.

Understanding Texas Laws

Understanding the basics of Texas laws for wills, trusts, and estates will help you feel confident about your legal choices. It’s also a smart idea to have a knowledgeable attorney on your side to guide you when considering what steps to take to ensure that your items are settled the way you want them to. This helps to secure your family’s future and guarantee that important items get distributed to the family members you left them to.

Here are some of the most common questions we get concerning Texas state laws and wills, estates, and trusts:

What Happens If I Pass Without a Will?

If you pass without a valid will, the Texas statutes will determine how your property will be divided among your remaining family members. However, this may conflict with how you want your property to be divided up. Making sure you have a valid Will will save you and your family a lot of heartache, stress and confusion.

Is a Will the Only Thing I Need?

A Will is an extremely important part of your estate plan but it only goes into effect after you have passed. If you wish to carry out specific wishes on how to manage your assets if you were to become temporarily or permanently disabled, there are other documents that you need to have. This includes, but is not limited to, the following:

  • Medical power of attorney

  • Power of attorney concerning your finances

  • Health care directive

  • HIPAA authorization

What Is an Estate?

An estate is all of your assets including any real estate, bank accounts, stocks and other securities, your life insurance policy, and any personal property such as cars, computers, jewelry, and artwork.

No matter the size of your estate, estate planning is extremely important. It helps you

  • choose who can make medical decisions for you in the case that you are not able to do so;

  • name a guardian if you have minors in your care;

  • name a guardian to manage the assets you left behind for your children or minors in your care;

  • specify how and by whom your assets should be managed or distributed should you be disabled or pass.

Peace of Mind: Wills

Having a Will can help create a sense of peace for your family. Your Will ensures that your final wishes are being met and that any property distributed goes to those whom it was intended for. While a Will can be created without the help of an attorney, it is not wise to do so. Without being done correctly, your Will may be considered invalid and, instead, your property will be distributed as the Texas Statutes deems fit.

Protection Through Creating a Trust

If you are worried about the individual to whom an asset, such as a savings account, is being given, then you can set up a trust. A trust will pay out a certain amount at set times in an individual’s life or during specific events. This helps protect that member from spending all of the money in one place. This is extremely important for minors, as the money left for them can be managed until they become adults and need the funds.

Always Make Sure You Are Working With an Experienced Attorney

Whether you are setting up a Will, a trust, or an estate plan, the team at Alison Grant, Attorney at Law can help you set it up correctly and feel confident about your decisions. We work hard to ensure that all of our clients get the important details taken care of and gain peace of mind knowing that their family will be okay in case something happens. Contact our team today for more information on our services or to schedule a consultation.