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Deed to Trust

I do estate planning every day of the work week from my offices in Sacramento and Roseville, California. I work with clients from a variety of economic backgrounds though most of my estate planning clients have some assets.   Some more than others of course.  I work with a lot of clients who own a house, a small bank account, a 401k or IRA, and a life insurance policy at work.  I work with others who own 10 or 15 pieces of real estate, businesses, large stock portfolios and the like. No matter the background clients have a hard time getting all their assets put “into” their trust.

Case in point is a client I just started working with who set up their trust many years ago. They are quite wealthy and own 17 pieces of real estate.  Only two of them are properly titled in their trust.  We thus have to prepare deeds to properly get their real estate into the trust. There is no easy fix.  Deeds have to be prepared to transfer the properties into the trust. Failure to do so will likely cause a visit to the Sacramento county probate Court after death.

In this client’s case they had their estate plan done by another attorney who didn’t set everything up correctly. However, they also obtained more real estate since then and forgot to put the newly acquired assets into the trust. Luckily when I reviewed the public records I saw the problem and advised them of it so we could get it fixed.  I am currently preparing new deeds to transfer these assets into their trust.

I have had other cases where I have been contacted after the people died and those end up in costly probate Court actions.  I encourage you to review your estate plan to make sure ALL of your assets are properly owned or connected to the trust.

Should you have any questions about California trusts, probate or estate planning contact me or visit our web page at www.californiaprobate.info

-John

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