Have your children moved far away from home to a different state or have you retired to a different state than where your children reside? If the answer to either question is “yes,” then you are like millions of other Americans who wonder what that means for their estate plans and whether they can still have a child who lives in a different state administer their estates. It is a common concern in the modern age.
The answer is “yes,” but it is not necessarily as easy for an out-of-state child to administer an estate as it would be if the child lived in the same state as the deceased parent. The big problem is that most people just have a Will as their primary estate planning tool. With a Will, the Executor, the person who administers the estate, often has to make multiple Probate court appearances. This means that children who live in different states might have to travel long distances to make those appearances. There are a few ways around this that still allow you to use a Will, but they can be expensive for the estate.
The much easier and cheaper way for the estate to get around this problem is not to use a Will as your primary estate planning tool. Instead, use a Revocable Living Trust. The assets in the Trust do not have to go through Probate so the out-of-state child administering the estate does not need to travel for court appearances.
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