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When Your Real Estate and Estate Planning Needs Collide

At first glance, real estate and estate planning appear to be two separate areas of law. However, the subject areas often intermingle, and when you are leaving property to your loved ones the implications for both can collide. Here’s what you should know about the overlap between your real estate and estate planning needs, and how a real estate attorney can help you to navigate these complex areas of law. 

For most people, a home is more than just a piece of property. It is a symbol of hard work and memories that hold both emotional and financial value. Deciding what to do with your property is a big decision. You may want to pass your property on to your loved ones as a home to live in or use as a real estate investment. Regardless of what you decide, the decision itself is a big part of your estate plan and important to address so that your property is handled properly. 

Legacy Determination

You worked hard to obtain and maintain your property, and most people want to ensure that their hard work is not squandered. One of the primary considerations when owning real estate is deciding what will happen to it when you pass away.  That’s why determining who will inherit your property is so important, and one of the reasons why attorneys recommend including real estate in your estate plan.

Tax Implications 

The transfer or sale of real estate can have significant tax consequences. It’s important to minimize tax burdens while still making sure that your beneficiaries receive what you want them to inherit. 

Family Dynamics

Unfortunately, the decisions that are made concerning real estate can create conflict among family members and loved ones. Luckily, estate planning creates an opportunity to be proactive, address potential conflicts, and leave direction to your loved ones so there is less ambiguity to decide amongst the family. You can explicitly state your wishes for your property, which ultimately makes it easier for everyone involved. 

Asset Protection 

Your estate plan can be essential in protecting your real estate assets from creditors and ensuring that your property transfers directly to the beneficiaries of your choice. This requires strategic planning, as failure to plan properly could land your beneficiaries in court for a Judge to decide on how your property will be handled.

A real estate attorney can help

Since real estate and estate planning must take one another into consideration, it’s best to consult with an experienced real estate attorney. He or she can help to walk you through this legal area with: 

  • Legal Knowledge – Real estate attorneys have a deep understanding of property laws, effective conveyances, regulations, and transactions, ensuring that your estate plan aligns seamlessly with these constraints.
  • Asset Evaluation – The best decisions come from having all of the information. Evaluating assets can provide insight into the current and potential future value of your real estate holdings, which in turn can enable you to make informed decisions.
  • Tax Strategies – Since gifting real estate can have huge tax implications, strategy is important for minimizing tax liabilities and maximizing the benefits. Real estate attorneys can help come up with tax-efficient strategies. 
  • Conflict Resolution – Should your family end up fighting amongst one another or challenging your decisions, a real estate attorney can help protect your wishes and assist with creating a clear and concise plan to carry out your wishes for your property. 
  • Documentation and Title – A real estate attorney is responsible for ensuring that property titles, deeds, and documents are carefully prepared, comply with all legal requirements, and are effectively transferred to who you want.

PALUMBO LAW Helps Those in Rhode Island with their Estate Plans

At PALUMBO LAW, our knowledgeable Rhode Island estate planning attorneys understand Rhode Island estate planning laws and will work strategically to help our clients uphold and protect their rights. If you are in need of a comprehensive estate plan or any associated documents, we can help. To learn more or to schedule a free consultation, call us today!