Oregon Estate Planning: What Does This Mean?

Oregon Estate Planning: What’s Involved?

What is an “estate”? What if I’m not rich? Do I still have an estate?

Yes, the term “estate” refers to everything that a person owns. Even if you do not have a large country estate with a big house, you still have an estate as long as you own something.

What is a “probate estate”?

A probate probate estate includes assets that can’t transfer to a person’s heirs without court intervention.

For example, if someone passes away and he wanted you to inherit his home, you don’t actually own it until the deed is transferred into your name. You can’t sell the property or take a mortgage against it, because simply having it bequeathed to you in a will does not make it legally yours. Your relative’s will only memorializes his intentions; a legal process is required to move ownership from him to you. Therefore, the home would have to pass through probate so a court can authorize the transfer.

What is a trust estate?

A trust estate includes assets that are owned by a trust. If you transfer your home to your trust, the home is part of the trust estate.

What are typical documents to include?

• Last Will and Testament, powers of attorney, and advance directives.

• Establishment of trusts to nominate trustees, fiduciaries, and to name the beneficiaries.