A well-prepared estate plan allows you to safeguard your assets and beneficiaries in life and upon death. The type of estate planning documents will depend on your unique situation and how you would like property to transfer to your beneficiaries. A person can own property solely, with another person, or as an organization.
Sole ownership is the most straightforward way to possess items, giving the beneficiary sole legal rights to do with the property as they please. Tenancy is one form of joint ownership, and each party has separate property interests. Talk to legal counsel about assets and ownership in St. Charles County. An experienced lawyer could answer specific questions during a consultation.
The Different Types of Ownership in Missouri
There are many ways that one or more parties can own a property together. Some of the most common in St. Charles County include the following:
Sole ownership means one person or entity owns the property without other co-owners. When a sole property owner is married, the spouse must sign the deed if they choose to sell or transfer the property.
A Tenant by the Entirety
When two spouses have an equal ownership interest in the property, they are tenants in the Entirety. Both have equal rights to the property and receive equal equity if they decide to sell the property.
“Joint tenants” is the legal real estate term meaning that two or more people hold title to the property. When joint tenants own property, and one passes away, it automatically passes to the living joint tenant through a right of survivorship.
Tenancy in Common
For tenancy in common, a group of people owns the title in equal or varying ownership percentages. When each owner dies, they can pass their share of the title to their beneficiaries. A knowledgeable lawyer in St. Charles County could further explain the types of ownership for property.
The Possession of Assets in St. Charles County
Missouri estate laws allow the estate executor to take control of the estate owner’s assets and property upon death. Per Missouri Revised Statute § 473.263, the executor has the legal authority to take control of assets unless the decedent has a surviving spouse or minor children. If the deceased has minor children, a spouse, or both, these parties will receive property as the laws require, and the executor will take possession of the remaining assets.
Trusts for Asset Protection
One straightforward way to protect assets is by transferring them to a trust. Trusts are legal estate planning documents and separate entities. Once the trust maker funds the revocable or irrevocable trust, the entity owns the assets, and a trustee will oversee the funds. A local attorney experienced with ownership and assets could provide legal guidance throughout the planning process.
Contact a St. Charles County Attorney to Discuss Assets and Ownership
Protecting your assets through sound estate planning is crucial to preserving your loved ones’ future. A skilled lawyer with experience handling assets and ownership in St. Charles County could listen to your goals and help create a plan tailored to your needs and desires.
An estate plan can protect your property, assets, and wealth and give you peace of mind that your family will be cared for in the future. Call today to schedule an appointment and begin preparing an estate plan to fit your needs.