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Arkansas estate planning and privacy -- trusts vs. wills

It is rather difficult in this technological age to keep private matters private. Arkansas residents who are thinking of estate planning should know about the differences between will and trust-based estate plans if they wish to keep their private affairs under wraps. In essence, estate plans that are will-based eventually become a matter of public record and anyone can access personal information contained in a will. 

Understanding assets in estate planning in Arkansas

When writing an estate plan, people have to think about all sorts of things, including their assets. But, what really constitutes an asset if one is in business? It may not be as clearcut as all that. When Arkansas entrepreneurs understand what's at stake in their estate planning, they may take the time to ensure those plans are thorough. Essentially, an asset is something that has some economic value currently or will have in the future.

Planning for the care of a pet during estate planning

Most people who have pets consider them to be a part of the family. Arkansas residents who feel this way will be happy to know that they can, indeed, make provisions for their furry family members in their estate planning documents. The law, however, considers pets to be personal property, so that is another good reason to include Fido and Fluffy in an estate plan.

Beginning of the year best time for estate planning gifts

The beginning of the year is the best time for gift giving when it comes estate plans. For those Arkansas residents who are thinking about making estate planning gifts, they should do so now. Very few estates are taxable under the law as it now stands, but there are other reasons annual giving makes sense. One of the greatest reasons to give gifts while still alive is the ability to see how they positively affect the lives of those who receive them.

The need for estate planning for Arkansas business owners

There are three documents that entrepreneurs need to include in their estate plans for safeguarding their businesses. Using savings and insurance alone doesn't cut it anymore and Arkansas residents who have spent the time and money into nurturing their businesses need to realize the importance of having wills, financial powers of attorney and living trusts when estate planning. As the business grows and prospers, these documents aren't only important to have, they're necessary.

Estate planning: Who is on the hook for estate taxes in Arkansas?

There are all kinds of decisions that need to be made when thinking about the future. For instance, during the estate planning process, Arkansas residents writing their estate plans need to be mindful of who of the named beneficiaries in the estate will be responsible for paying the estate tax. Wills and trusts have specific indications on this issue.

Updating estate planning documents in Arkansas is essential

It's great when people take the time to plan their estates. It's not so great when estate planning ends there. Leaving an estate plan drafted in Arkansas unattended for years as life circumstances change may be just as detrimental as not having a plan at all. Federal estate tax laws were given an overhaul with the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, allowing individual gifts over a lifetime of more than $11 million for singles and double for couples.

Which type of trust is better in estate planning?

For individuals thinking about how trusts might benefit them when planning their estates, the decision between a revocable and an irrevocable trust might seem perplexing. That estate planning decision pretty much hinges on how much control a grantor wishes to have over his or her assets. There are certain things a trust can and can't do for Arkansas residents.

Making the right decisions when it comes to estate planning

Writing down one's final wishes can be both daunting and stressful. But when Arkansas residents are aware of what not to do when in the throes of estate planning, the road may be a lot less bumpy. Estate planning need not be a chore, especially when looking at it from the perspective of making life much easier for loved ones. For wishes to be carried out the way a testator would like, there must be some sort of planning documents in existence, and the more comprehensive they are, the better.

Family squabbles could threaten estate planning in Arkansas

When it comes to anything with a monetary value, people can become quite irate. Arkansas residents who are thinking about estate planning ought to know that their family members could stir the pot when it comes to what they will or won't receive in terms of being named beneficiaries of a will. Sometimes the death of loved one brings out the claws in many relatives, and it's best to know this when drafting estate plan documents.

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