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How to Title Your Assets Properly

April 18, 2014

It’s not enough to simply have a will. If you want to ensure your assets are distributed in the way you’ve planned after your death, you must learn how to title your assets properly. Too many people forget to title their assets, forget to update them, or simply assume their family and friends will bestow their assets upon the right people. The fact is, you never know what might happen after you pass away, so it’s best to prepare for your death as though anything might go wrong. By creating a firm, legally-binding estate plan and learning how to title your assets properly, you can feel confident about your future, the future of your beneficiaries, and the future of your assets.

How to Title Your Assets

How to Title Your Assets Properly

So why is learning how to title your assets properly so important? Titles come before wills and trusts. So if you have an improperly titled asset as well as a will/trust that contradicts that title, the title will oust the will in terms of importance. So don’t shrug off the titling of your assets; they could greatly affect your estate plan. Also, remember to update them regularly, especially when your life undergoes a major change (for example, if you marry, if you have a child, or if your beneficiary dies), so that your plan remains current and reflects your true wishes for your estate.

But learning how to title your assets doesn’t just guarantee your wishes will be carried out; it also helps you quicken the pace and avoid the complicated probate process. Finally, it will protect your privacy.

As you begin investigating asset titles, you’ll learn there are a variety of ways to title your assets. By analyzing your situation and working with an attorney experienced in estate planning, you can decide which title designations to implement. These are just a few of your choices:

  • Payable on death

  • Transfer on death

  • Joint tenancy

  • Tenancy in common

  • Survivor-ship marital property

  • Titling the asset in the name of your Trust

For best results (to reduce your taxes and relieve any future potential burdens that could plague your beneficiaries), you will need to work with an attorney. Your attorney can help you title or re-title your assets and communicate with other asset providers on your behalf. With their help, you will be able to transfer your belongings to your beneficiaries with little stress and fewer costs. When you consider the privacy, the savings, and the efficiency, it becomes clear that learning how to title your assets properly is worth a bit of your time, don’t you think?

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Although this basic overview should help you understand the importance of titling your assets, many more details factor into the equation, details that you will need to discuss with an attorney. So if you don’t know how to title your assets properly and you live in or near Springfield, Missouri, please give the attorneys (R. Clancy Parks and/or Cameron G. Jones) at LifeGen Law Group a call. We can help you prepare a complete, efficient, and effective estate plan where your assets are titled properly and; assist you as you update it in the years to come. Give us a call today at 417-823-9898 or click here to receive a free consultation.