Surviving family members may experience a costly and lengthy probate in North Carolina if their loved one passed away without effective estate planning. After reviewing the new rules released in Chatham, the increasing requirements of probate may complicate the process even more. Fortunately, probate of an estate can be avoided. Individuals can prevent a stressful probate for their loved ones by using revocable living trusts and other estate planning tools.
Revocable living trusts are estate planning tools that may be amended at any time, allow assets to be owned by the trust, confidentially pass property without the requirement of public recording, and avoid the cost and delay of probate. Assets included in the trust are often listed in trust documents, however, property with titles—like real property and vehicles—must be re-titled in the name of the trust. Learn more about transferring vehicles to a revocable living trust.
Not only is the complexity and cost of probate growing in Chatham County, but the county itself is preparing for extreme population growth. The largest development in North Carolina’s history was recently approved. Chatham Park is a new mixed-used development on nearly 10,000 acres; the population is estimated to grow from about 4,000 people to over 60,000 in the next 30 years. It remains to be seen, but estate administration requirements and court processes may change again in the future to accommodate the growing population. Maintain annual reviews with an estate planning attorney to make necessary revisions in response to legislation changes as they occur.