Practice Area

Pour-Over Will Lawyer in Arizona

Integrating a pour-over will into your estate planning is a strategic move that complements the creation of a living revocable trust, ensuring that all your assets will be effectively managed and distributed according to your wishes. A pour-over will acts as a strategic safeguard to protect the goals of your trust-based estate plan. 

At PayneLess Law™ in Phoenix, AZ, we understand the nuances involved in crafting a comprehensive estate plan that includes using a pour-over will. Our approach simplifies the management of your estate and provides you with peace of mind.

What is a Pour Over Will?

A pour-over will works in conjunction with a living revocable trust. Upon your passing, pour over will directs any assets left in your estate, meaning those assets that have not previously been transferred to your revocable trust, to be transferred into your trust. The key advantage here is seamless asset management: instead of dealing with multiple directives through various documents, a pour-over will ensures that all your assets are consolidated under the terms of a single trust. This simplification aids in avoiding the complexities of probate for these assets, as they become part of the trust’s distribution plan.

Assets That May Be Covered by Your Pour-Over Will in Arizona

In Arizona, a comprehensive estate plan often includes both a living trust and a pour over will to ensure that all your assets are managed according to your wishes, both during your lifetime and after your passing. While a living revocable trust offers the advantage of avoiding probate for the assets it holds, there are often assets that, for various reasons, are not included in the trust at the time of death. A pour over will serves as a safety net, capturing any assets that were not previously transferred into your trust such as:

  • Personal Belongings Not Titled or Specifically Listed in the Trust:
    • Items of sentimental value such as jewelry, family heirlooms, or art collections
    • Household items and personal effects that may not have been individually listed or transferred to the trust
  • Real Estate or Vehicles Acquired Shortly Before Passing:
    • Properties purchased or inherited that you didn’t have time to transfer to the trust
    • Vehicles, boats, or other titled assets bought close to the end of life
  • Financial Accounts Not Yet Included in the Trust:
    • Newly opened bank accounts or investment accounts without a beneficiary clause
    • Retirement accounts for which a trust cannot be named as a direct beneficiary, but the pour-over will can direct their distribution after death
  • Business Interests:
    • Shares in closely held businesses or partnerships that may have restrictions on transfer or were not placed into the trust
  • Forgotten or Unknown Assets:
    • Sometimes we have old accounts that we’ve forgotten, or people or entities that owe us money, or unclaimed property held by the government or even an inheritance from a long lost relative or friend
  • Digital Assets:
    • Online accounts, social media, digital currencies, or intellectual property not formally placed into a trust

Benefits of a Pour Over Will

A pour-over will consolidates the distribution of your assets under the terms set in your living trust, simplifying the estate administration process. It provides for last-minute acquisitions or overlooked assets, ensuring they are included in your estate plan.

If you don’t have a will, assets left out of the trust may be distributed according to the Arizona laws of intestate succession, and your property may pass to someone you never intended to have it. Your plans for the allocation of assets can be knocked out of alignment. While a pour over will be subject to the expensive probate process, because it exists your designated personal representative or executor can utilize the informal process instead of the much more expensive and cumbersome “formal” probate process required when there is no existing valid will, even if there is a trust.

A pour-over will maintains privacy. Although the will becomes a matter of public record when admitted to probate, the terms simply state that property will pass into your trust, without providing details of the distribution through the trust. 

Practical Considerations

For a pour-over will to operate, your trust must be established properly. While a pour-over will could be used to manage all of your assets, it is usually best to transfer assets into the trust while you are still living, and use the pour-over will to catch remaining assets that have been left out. Otherwise, your beneficiaries will need to wait until the long ,slow, and expensive probate process concludes to receive distributions. 

After PayneLess Law creates your estate plan, we review it with you periodically to ensure that the terms still serve your best interests or to see whether you need to make changes. 

Contact PayneLess Law Today

At the PayneLess Law, we will compassionately guide you through the intricacies of estate planning with a personal touch. Incorporating a pour-over will into your estate plan ensures a cohesive strategy for managing and distributing your assets to reflect your wishes accurately.

Contact PayneLess Law at 480-420-7199 or online for a PayneFree™ Consultation to learn how to plan for your estate with a pour-over will in Arizona today. We are ready to assist you in creating an estate plan that provides clarity, security, and peace of mind for you and your loved ones.

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Ready to start planning your legacy? Connect with us today to begin the journey towards a secure, well-planned future for you and your loved ones.

PayneLess Law™ Office

Monday to Friday 9 am to 6 pm

Monday to Friday 9 am to 6 pm