One of the most crucial aspects of estate planning is understanding the numerous people that might be affected by the terms listed in a will, trust, or other document. Both “interested parties” and beneficiaries are important examples of people that relate to estate planning, but these two groups differ in some key ways.
If you are navigating any sort of inheritance-related legal process, a knowledgeable estate planning attorney could explain both beneficiaries and interested parties in Tustin estate plans. Our hardworking attorneys could assess your situation, answer questions, and help resolve issues that arise at any point.
Beneficiaries and Asset Distribution
In the estate planning world, beneficiaries refer to individuals who are set to inherit an asset or property from a will, trust, insurance policy, or other form of estate planning document. The author of the will typically outlines exactly which beneficiary inherits each asset, to help simplify the probate process. For instance, a parent might establish that, upon their death, one child is entitled to a family house, while the other gets to inherit a car or the funds deposited in a bank account.
If a decedent did not incorporate a will into their estate plan, the process of distributing assets to beneficiaries becomes a bit more complicated. California laws known as intestate succession outline what happens with a decedent’s property, in detail. For example, if there is a surviving spouse and no children, all property would go to them. If there is no living partner, assets would go to children in equal shares. Meanwhile, if there are parents but no surviving spouse or children, the entire inheritance would go to these guardians. If there are a combination of living relatives, assets get redistributed in complex ways.
This might seem overwhelming, but a dedicated attorney in Tustin could assess a family’s existing estate plan to determine who is listed as a beneficiary and who could inherit property under the state’s priority order.
How Does an Interested Party Fit into an Estate Plan?
In a typical estate plan, California laws define an interested person as a beneficiary, a potential heir, someone acting on behalf of either of those two parties, or anyone related to the decedent. Generally speaking, an interested person is someone who would be affected by the outcome of a will or trust.
Interested parties are entitled to significant protections and rights during probate. For instance, these people can submit a special notice, which allows them to receive any of the personal representative’s court filings. Copies of these documents help an interested person keep track of an executor’s actions, making sure that the representative is respecting the decedent’s wishes and properly administering an estate.
Having this protection is important because personal representatives do not always act in the best interests of the estate. They might make decisions too slowly, interpret a will against the listed wishes, or attempt to take advantage of a deceased individual.
If an interested party has questions about their rights and protections under California law, a seasoned lawyer in Tustin could speak with them and explain how they fit into an existing estate plan.
Meet With an Attorney about Beneficiaries and Interested Parties in Tustin Estate Plans
If you qualify as either a beneficiary or an interested party who would stand to be affected by an existing estate plan, you likely have rights under California law that deserve protection. Understanding these securities without legal representation can be confusing since every will, trust, or document is different. Additionally, the state’s priority order could impact who inherits assets when a will cannot be found.
To get more help with beneficiaries and interested parties in Tustin estate plans, do not hesitate to reach out to our office today. Our team of hardworking lawyers could provide personalized assistance and make sure your estate plan stays on track.