Trusts and Estates

Ca. Trs. & Estates Quarterly 2015 Volume 21, Issue 1

NONPROBATE TRANSFERS: CONSIDERATIONS FOR ESTATE PLANNING AND ADMINISTRATION

By Danielle E. Miller, Esq. *

I. INTRODUCTION

Nearly half of all Americans—about 46 percent—die with less than $10,000 in financial assets.1 Most Americans with children die without a will.2 While state intestacy laws provide a framework for how a decedent’s assets will be divided among his or her closest relatives, there must still be a process or mechanism in place for transferring any assets remaining after death. This article explores options for transferring assets in California without a probate administration—both where the decedent dies intestate, and where leaving a will and/or trust.

II. METHODS FOR TRANSFERRING ASSETS AT DEATH WITHOUT PROBATE OR A FUNDED TRUST TO CONSIDER DURING THE ESTATE PLANNING PROCESS

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