We’ve all heard stories of lottery winners who have gone bankrupt. While an impending inheritance for you may not be on the same level as winning the lottery jackpot, there are still things you should be aware of when it comes to smart ways to handle an inheritance. Your inheritance may include more than cash, which only complicates things further. Knowing how to navigate your loved one’s estate will help to keep your inheritance in your hands, whatever you may be inheriting.

Understand What You’ve Inherited

Before you try to cash in on any assets, you need to understand what you’ve inherited. Inheriting cash versus stocks or real estate all come with different stipulations to be aware of. Each type of asset that you could possibly inherit will have different ways they need to be transferred in terms of taxes and ownership. Always consult a professional in your area before you touch anything, they’ll be able to help you navigate state laws or any federal laws that may apply to your situation.

Make a Plan

Take your time and make a plan for your newly acquired assets. Making decisions during a time of grief is never a good idea. Also handling someone’s estate, or going outside of your financial comfort zone, may all be new to you. With inheritance tax
laws always changing, talk to an estate planning or tax professional in your area before cashing in. Depending on the amount of money you’ve inherited, or cash that you would receive from selling assets, you need to plan for taxes. Some transfers may take time too, so if you rush into a hasty decision in which you would be relying on this money, you may be putting yourself in a tough situation. 

Talk to a Professional

If you’re new to navigating an estate plan, or even if you’re not, it doesn’t hurt to talk to an estate planning professional to help you learn the smart ways to handle an inheritance. Not only will they be able to help you plan for the best ways to transfer assets, they can also help you plan for your own estate plan. Don’t get stuck with an unnecessary tax bill, let a professional guide you through the estate planning process. 

We are here to help. If you’re in Illinois or Wisconsin, contact us today and let us set you up for success when it comes to your estate plan or inheritance. An inheritance can be life changing, let us help you make sure it changes your life for the better. 

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Disclaimer: This article is intended to serve as a general summary of the issues outlined therein. While this article may include general guidance, it is not intended as, nor is a substitute for, qualified legal advice. Your review or receipt of this article by Lexern Law Offices, Ltd. (the “LLG”) or any of its attorneys does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and the LLG. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors of the article and does not reflect the opinion of the LLG.