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Your Will May Be Available to the Public

A Last Will and Testament is Not Private

When a will goes through the probate process, all the details in it become part of the public record. Anyone can go to the courthouse and receive a copy of your will upon request.  It is common for newspaper reporters to go to the courthouse and get copies of wills of local celebrities to get more information about their family and the family’s assets/property.

Leave Assets Without a Will

There are many ways around using a will to distribute your assets and property when you are gone.  In fact, it is possible to leave all of your estate assets without a will. By setting up trusts and “payable on death” accounts with successor trustees in place and by naming beneficiaries on all your insurance policies and pensions, you can assure that your assets will be distributed without going through probate. An estate that does not go through probate does not go through the court system and does not become a public record.

Privacy is actually one of the best reasons to put all your estate assets in a trust.  A trust can be a great way to distribute assets without any public record.

Get Legal Help

Experienced Estate Planning Attorney Elga Goodman can show you how to protect your assets and your confidentiality. Contact us today at 973-841-5111.

Posted in: Estate Planning, New York Estate Planning