One of the most common questions regarding estate planning is, "how do I avoid probate?" However, a better question is, "should I avoid probate?" Probate horror stories abound, but the process doesn't have to be expensive or stressful if the decedent's affairs are in order with a clear, appropriate estate plan in place. Depending on a number of factors (size of estate, location of assets, whether he/she has a surviving spouse), probate may actually be a good thing, especially when it comes to making use of certain kinds of trusts to fully utilize each spouse's state and federal estate tax exemptions.
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