From our “Ask a Question” mailbag: In preparation for my upcoming death, I have formed a Revocable Living Trust to make easier the transfer of my assets to my partner. I wish to avoid probate in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. I do have some legal claims against people who owe me money that may not be resolved before my death. Do I need a will?
If properly formed and funded with all of your assets that would otherwise be probate assets, your thoughtfully planned Revocable Living Trust can avoid probate in Bucks County. However, if you have a legal claim at your death, that claim must be pursued by your Executor. Although it is possible to transfer your claim into the Revocable Trust, this is often problematic.
Under typical conditions, shortly after your death, your Executor would file your will and than have your estate take your place as plaintiff in any pending lawsuits. Because of this possibility, you should form a “Pour Over Will” and name your partner as Executor. This type of Will is rather simple, and only states that any Probate Assets collected after your death “pour into” the revocable trust. It then gives your named Executor the rights to gather these assets. This would include the pursuit of any remaining legal claims.
If you have questions about LGBT Estate Planning in Pennsylvania, feel free to contact our office for a free consultation.