Small to medium size estates are susceptible to depletion before they are distributed. It is common for a person to have expenses which must be paid by the estate. Expenses such as:
Assets in a smaller estate may be exhausted by the payment of these final expenses before anything is distributed to beneficiaries.
A properly drafted Last Will and Testament is the best start to preserving you estate assets. You can assign how debts will be paid from your estate as well as who will make the payments. A trust is also an excellent way to preserve estate assets. A trust may not be as accessible to pay estate debts as assets not placed in a trust. An Estate Plan is a strategy for preserving your assets for your beneficiaries and is important even if you don’t think you have a large estate.