Are you trying to get your estate plan together in Virginia? Maybe you are questioning whether or not you need to do it at all. Probate court is a primary reason why people explore their estate planning process. At the very least, a minimal estate plan can help simplify probate, quicken the process, and give you an understanding of where your money and assets will go. An in-depth estate plan can even help your estate avoid probate altogether. Learn how to avoid probate in Virginia from AC Rieman Law in Culpeper, VA.

Man in a suit behind a gavel

What Goes Through Probate in Virginia?

Generally, any estate with a value of over $50,000 in Virginia must go through probate, and probate is not fun for anyone especially when a clear estate plan has not been put in place and there are multiple potential heirs.

The process is often necessary to ensure that any bills, debts, and final expenses were paid and to gather all necessary documentation regarding the ownership and control of assets within the estate. That can be all well and good but there is also a probate tax involved and probate can take time. Large estates could even take years before they are fully resolved. If you don’t want your loved ones to have to wait and you don’t want to deal with probate tax, then you may want to avoid probate with a majority of your assets.

Read More: Who Should Have an Estate Plan in Virginia

How Long Does Probate Take in Virginia?

Old couple signing paperwork related to estate planning

At minimum, probate will take 6 months in Virginia. This is because the courts give creditors 6 months to make a claim on the estate. Even after that 6-month period, other factors can make probate take even longer. It is not uncommon for the process to take a year. However, like we said before, for larger estates it can take several years.

How Much is Probate Tax in Virginia

At the time of filing, all probate tax must be paid, this also includes any federal and state taxes owed but the deceased. Additionally, a probate tax will be assessed. Generally, this tax is assessed on the value of all assets and amounts to .1% for the state as well as an additional .033% in applicable local taxes.

This may sound like a small burden, but on even moderately-sized estates, it can really add up. Luckily there are ways to avoid probate with a revocable living trust. That’s where AC Rieman can help with our estate planning services.

How Does a Revocable Living Trust Help Avoid Probate?

A revocable living trust is a great addition to any estate plan. It allows for continuity of asset management to be maintained and can include rules and stipulations for how those assets are to be maintained and distributed upon your death.

Moreover, you can change a revocable trust at any time after they are established and assets in a living trust avoid probate entirely. Essentially, all the work that a probate court would go through, including establishing titles, determining heirs, assessing taxes, etc.

Estate Planning Services in Northern and Central Virginia

Located in Culpeper, Virginia, AC Rieman Law is here to help you with all your estate planning. We can set up a revocable living trust for you and talk you through all your options for all your assets. Do not hesitate to reach out to us.

Nothing posted on this website is intended, nor should be construed, as legal advice. Blog postings and site content are available for general education purposes only.

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