As we navigate the uncertainties of life, preparing for the future becomes paramount. At Heritage Law Office, we can guide you through setting up a Funeral Trust in Wisconsin to ensure your final wishes are carried out without placing financial burdens on your loved ones. Our experienced attorneys are ready to discuss your estate planning needs, offering various options tailored to your circumstances. Contact us online or at 414-253-8500 to schedule a free consultation today.
What is a Funeral Trust and Why You Need One in Wisconsin
A Funeral Trust is a legally binding agreement where funds are set aside specifically for funeral expenses. The objective of establishing this trust is to provide financial peace of mind to family members during a difficult time and ensure your final wishes are respected.
Benefits of Establishing a Funeral Trust in Wisconsin
Setting up a Funeral Trust has several benefits that make it an appealing option for many individuals as part of their estate planning process.
A Funeral Trust ensures that funds are available when needed, minimizing the financial stress on your loved ones during an already challenging time. The funds in the trust are designated solely for funeral expenses, meaning they can't be diverted for other purposes.
Protection Against Medicaid Spend Down
In Wisconsin, a properly set up Funeral Trust is exempt from Medicaid asset calculations. This means that the funds you've set aside for your funeral expenses won't impact your eligibility for Medicaid assistance for long-term care.
Factors to Consider When Setting Up a Funeral Trust in Wisconsin
When establishing a Funeral Trust, there are a few key considerations to keep in mind to ensure the process aligns with your needs and desires.
Choosing a Trustee
The trustee is responsible for overseeing the management of the trust. This person or entity should be someone you trust implicitly, such as a family member, close friend, or a reputable legal entity.
Understanding Funeral Costs
Having a clear understanding of potential funeral costs is essential to adequately fund the trust. Costs may include services such as embalming, casket, burial plot, headstone, and any additional ceremonies or celebrations of life you wish to include.
Contact a Funeral Trust Attorney in Wisconsin
If you're considering establishing a Funeral Trust, our knowledgeable attorneys at Heritage Law Office are here to assist. We can guide you through the process, ensuring you're informed of all available options to meet your specific needs. Contact our team by using the online form or calling us directly at 414-253-8500. We look forward to helping you with your estate planning needs.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
1. What is the difference between a Funeral Trust and a Will in Wisconsin?
A will is a legal document that outlines how you want your assets distributed upon your death, while a Funeral Trust is a dedicated account set aside specifically for funeral expenses. A Funeral Trust is not a substitute for a will but is a part of comprehensive estate planning. While a will goes through probate and can be contested, funds in a Funeral Trust are immediately available upon death and are protected from creditors.
2. How much money can I put into a Funeral Trust in Wisconsin?
The amount you can put into a Funeral Trust varies. However, it's recommended to cover the anticipated cost of funeral and burial expenses. You should consult with an experienced attorney at Heritage Law Office for personalized advice based on your specific circumstances and the current funeral cost trends in Wisconsin.
3. Can I cancel or change my Funeral Trust?
Depending on the type of trust you have set up, it may or may not be revocable (able to be changed or cancelled). This is an important consideration when establishing the trust, and something the experienced attorneys at Heritage Law Office can guide you through.
4. Who can set up a Funeral Trust?
Any competent adult can set up a Funeral Trust. In fact, it's a wise step in planning for the future. It's advisable to seek professional help from an experienced attorney to ensure the trust is set up correctly and in accordance with Wisconsin law.
5. What happens to the money in a Funeral Trust if it is not all used for funeral expenses?
This depends on the specific terms set out in your trust. In some cases, any remaining funds may be returned to your estate and distributed according to your will. In others, the remainder may be donated to a pre-determined charity or individual. This is something you can discuss with your attorney when setting up the trust.