Learn more about our Private Trust and Estate Planning.
What is estate planning?
Estate planning is the process of determining, during one’s lifetime, the management and disposal of one’s assets.
What is included in an estate?
An estate is inclusive of everything a person owns. This may include one’s home, other real estate, investments , personal property, etcetera.
Who needs an estate plan?
You do! Everyone needs an estate plan. Having an estate plan is not dependent on the size of one’s estate and does not symbolise death. It is about planning for the disposition and administration of an estate, that is, all the assets owned by a person.
Why is it important to have an estate plan?
If proper legal arrangements are not made for the management of one’s assets and affairs, the assets will be subject to the country’s intestacy laws.
As a result, the Estate goes through probate which does not guarantee privacy. Furthermore, the probate process is tedious, cost-intensive and can tie up one’s assets for a long time.
What estate plan is right for me?
The right strategy depends on the individual whose estate is being planned, the assets owned and how the individual owns it.
Generally a Will is used where someone has more than one relative and has no wishes for the court to decide what happens to his assets.
A Trust can either be used to supplement a Will or to replace a Will. People with real estate assets will benefit greatly from creating Trusts because these assets will pass with ease to the beneficiaries.
What happens if I die without an estate plan?
Where you die without an estate plan, you are said to have died intestate. Where a person dies intestate, the person’s estate becomes subject to State laws and goes through the probate process. Probate can take many years, is very tedious and cost intensive. In most cases, a large chunk of the Estate goes to paying off lawyers whose services were engaged during probate.
Will my Estate be subject to taxes with an estate plan?
Tax burden differs in different jurisdictions and states and is often a significant portion of the Estate. Taxes are usually imposed when the deceased has left a Will and the deceased’s Estate goes through the probate process. In contrast however, estate taxes can be completely avoided by putting one’s assets in a Trust.
Do I still have a right and access to my property after a Trust is set up?
Yes! When a Trust is created, the legal title to the property passes to the trustee and the beneficial interest remains with the creator of the Trust known as the Settlor. The extent to which the Settlor manages the Trust assets depends on the type of Trust that has been set up and the terms of that Trust.
What should I look out for in my trustees?
Trusts can only be as successful as the trustees that manage them so picking the right trustees is crucial. Several factors like pedigree, experience, objectivity, continuity and prudence should be considered when selecting a trustee. A good trustee must be accountable and should always be ready to provide on-going communication with the creator of the Trust.
What are the duties of trustees?
A trustee is obligated to carry out the Settlor’s intentions, according to the terms of the Trust. Although the trustee can delegate some of these duties, the trustee is still responsible for the administration of the Trust assets and must exercise caution when delegating duties to third parties.
Trustees have a fiduciary duty to the creator of the Trust and to the beneficiaries. Trustees also have a duty to take reasonable care and skill in every investment that they make. A trustee must not undertake any transaction that is adverse to any of the beneficiaries’ interest and is accountable to the Settlor and the beneficiaries of a Trust.
How much does estate planning cost?
This is dependent on your preferred estate plan. The cost of drafting a Will may vary depending on how much time and skill one may require and how complex one’s
Estate and wishes are.
Setting up a Trust will usually require a set-up fee after which a recurring amount may be paid to the trustees for managing the Trust.
How can we serve you?
ARM Trustees is a wholly owned subsidiary of ARM Traditional Asset Management Company Limited. The Company offers a novel blend of Executorship/Trust services to its clients.
ARM Trustees comprises a dedicated team of professionals whose primary focus is to deliver high quality service in an efficient and professional manner. Our services have grown to include professional estate planning through setting up of structures that ensure wealth preservation and asset protection, executorship roles in Wills and Testaments, facilitation of offshore Trusts, and establishment of Foundations and Charitable Trusts.
For more information on our Private Trust and Estate Planning offerings, our Trust Advisors would be pleased to meet with you to discuss your peculiar needs.