As a business owner, keeping informed about the finer points of employment law is important. If you're getting ready to hire your first employees, you need to be sure that you understand exactly what you can and cannot do. Don't risk getting yourself into legal trouble by asking the wrong question at the interview or making an off-hand comment that's considered legally unacceptable. I created this site to give you the basics of employment law expectations. I hope that the information here helps you to understand what you should and shouldn't do as you're interviewing and hiring your first staff members.
It's always a good idea to have a will. You can decide what happens to your assets after you pass away and make other important decisions, such as how your healthcare will be handled if you are incapacitated. However, depending on your unique situation, it is wise to hire an estate planning attorney to help you with your will and set up a trust.
Testamentary Vs. Living Trusts
When setting up a trust, you can set up both a testamentary and living trust. The living trust goes into effect when certain conditions are met and is meant to be in effect while you are still alive. A testamentary trust, however, goes into effect when you pass away. Through trust, you can control how your assets are distributed.
How to Establish a Testamentary Trust
You are allowed to establish trust through your will. Through the will, you can specify what will go into your trust and who will receive your possessions. However, assets will not be distributed to your trust until you have passed away. This is an important detail because your assets will still be a part of your estate and will be subjected to estate taxes and all the other issues associated with going through probate. However, a living will avoid probate and is not taxed.
Different Levels of Control
Because a testamentary trust does not go into effect until you have passed away and is controlled by what is written in your will, you can change your trust at any time. However, with a living trust, whether you can change it depends on whether the trust is considered revocable or not.
Regardless of whether you choose a revocable trust, there are advantages to this type of trust. For example, you are offered greater privacy when choosing a living trust because it does not go through probate. The probate process is a matter of public record; others will have access to it.
Living Trusts Are Not for Everyone
A testamentary trust is very simple and easy to do. Therefore, it's more commonly chosen than other types of trusts. However, you might find that a living trust better suits your needs, and you should then speak with an estate administration lawyer.
The job of an estate administration lawyer is to help you prepare your last will and testament and also to help you set up a trust. They help you make sure that your beneficiaries receive your assets.