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Non-Probate Matters

Most people don't realize that following someone's death it's not just the court procedures ("probate") that must be considered but also the various tax ramifications. Estate tax, income tax, and capital gains tax each requires consideration as applied to the assets in a decedent's portfolio. Any Massachusetts estate exceeding $1 million carries an estate tax filing requirement, although if there is an inheriting spouse there may not be any tax actually due to the government. Such a filing, along with any tax owed, must be filed within nine months of date of death.

Aside from factoring in tax exposures, there may be assets held by a decedent that do not require the court procedures known as "probate". Examples of this include investment accounts that carry a so-called "transfer on death" designation or retirement accounts that name a designated beneficiary. Jointly-held assets also avoid the probate process.

Our office ensures that you consider all relevant probate and non-probate matters when reviewing a loved one's affairs.
Feel free to contact us with immediate questions and please refer to the "Immediate Concerns" of the Probate section of this website. We will direct you on the data to collect in anticipation of a meeting with one of our attorneys.

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