Jointly-owned assets may become subject to the judgments, lawsuits and bankruptcy of any joint owner. Also, a deed may convey land to another and retain for the original owner the right to use and occupy it during that owner’s lifetime (a “life estate” deed). The Probate Department (Brokers) Ltd Help & Savings 03 300 102 300. §§ 91-27-1 to 19.). A living trust is effective while a person is alive. The information provided on this site is not legal advice, does not constitute a lawyer referral service, and no attorney-client or confidential relationship is or will be formed by use of the site. You will be able to avoid probate, but you will need to be cautious about how the cash is divided up afterwards. A proper estate plan accomplishes this by ensuring that certain assets do not become part of the decedent’s estate. Last week I was asked by another client how to avoid probate. In Mississippi, these forms of joint ownership are available: In Mississippi, you can add a "payable-on-death" (POD) designation to bank accounts such as savings accounts or certificates of deposit. Between the fees, costs, and stress, the process can be daunting and overwhelming. Most of my clients know for sure they want to avoid probate but they are not exactly sure why. You can make sure that your family will avoid Probate Court after your death if you act now to create an estate plan. Your joint interest will not pass according to the terms of your will or trust or through probate. Setting up a revocable trust does entail some expense, so you need to decide whether the benefits outweigh the costs of avoiding probate in Washington State, which could be substantial, depending on how many assets you own, their complexity and location. However, this process is not difficult to understand. Probate is the process by which the assets of a decedent are administered through the courts. Joint Bank Account. For bank and financial accounts, the bank documents which established the account determine if it is jointly owned. You will need to find out what the tax burden will be on the amount you receive, if it's purely cash. A bad reputation is often attributed to Missouri probate courts because they can be costly and a hassle, but unfortunately not much can be done to avoid them in most situations in which a loved one dies. Generally, joint accounts and accounts or assets with beneficiary designations (e.g. Mississippi has a procedure that allows inheritors to skip probate altogether when the value of all the assets left behind is less than a certain amount. Assets that automatically transfer to another person without a court order will avoid probate. Once all that's done, the property will be controlled by the terms of the trust. An alternative to joint ownership may be a “payable on death” designation. Therefore, joint ownership and life estate deeds may be used in specific circumstances to direct ownership of land and avoid probate. If there is a Last Will and Testament, the Mississippi estate attorney needs the original, signed document. Alternatives to Probate in Mississippi Note: This section of the site deals with the various techniques that Mississippi probate attorneys sometimes use to avoid or shorten the probate process for someone who is already deceased. It is much easier to avoid probate by proper planning during life. To be considered small, the amount of the estate will vary based on where you live. 2. This will specifically instruct the insurance company or retirement plan administrator how to disburse the benefits at your death, so that these benefits can be managed in keeping with the specific needs of each beneficiary while avoiding unintended tax consequences. 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