Tag Archives: law

Deciding on a Family Trust: What to Consider

Trust Fund Contract

Many people are starting to see the benefits of making a family trust in Auckland, a service offered by firms such as Accounting North Ltd. Still, some do not fully understand what it is. So what is a family trust? It is a legal document that covers the distribution or dispersion of an individual’s assets after death.

The one who makes the trust is the “grantor.” The grantor transfers his assets to the “trust” and not specific individuals as in wills. The grantor appoints a “trustee” to carry out the terms of the family trust after the former has passed on. The grantor can change the conditions of a family trust anytime.

So how do you decide if you want a will or a family trust? Here are some considerations.

You Can Use It as an Estate-Planning Tool

You do not have to have a long list of real estate properties or businesses to make a family trust. It is not something that is limited to the rich and famous. Anyone can make a family trust if he or she wishes an efficient and sure way to distribute his or her wealth after he or she has passed.

A Family Trust Does Not Go Through Probate

Probate is a legal process where a will of a deceased individual needs to be proving and registered in the Supreme Court. A family trust does not need to go through this process, which makes the distribution of wealth and assets faster and easier.

A Family Trust Sets up Health Power of Attorney

One of the benefits of creating a family trust is having the health powers of attorney. This means that in case that the grantor suffers incapacity, the trust appoints someone who can make the medical decisions in case you cannot do it on your own. You also decide who this person will be.

While anyone can make a family trust, many people choose this option if they have a considerable list of wealth and assets to distribute. Many still prefer a will because it is upfront, the lesser expensive route. But if you think you will have more control over your assets through a family trust, take this route instead.

Presence, Power and Lack of Women in the Legal Industry

Woman

WomanWithout agenda except for a simple statement of a fundamental fact: women have long been under-represented in the top ranks of law firms. Not to say that nothing has been done and not to say that women are close to giving up; it’s just the case at the moment.

This, however, might not be the case for very long. New data presents a slight glimmer of hope and suggests that progress may be on its way. Women are slowly rising into power equipped with experience and degrees earned from universities and online schools, like The Center for Legal Studies.

Women on Top

New studies identify several independent law firms and associations putting notable women into positions of power. One of which is the Women in Law Empowerment Forum (WILEF), a group that aims to hold law firms accountable for putting women in top roles.

This year alone, they honored 44 law firms that notably stepped up in the patriarchal industry during their fifth annual Gold Standard Certification. With this recognition comes a form of encouragement women rarely witness.

Power Play

The average percentage of women on governance committees of the honored firms was 27% and on compensation committees was 25%. According to WILEF, these positions are crucial to helping the rest of the women in the organization or firm advance.

Despite the apparent progress in the Big Boys league, which in itself is already commendable, women are still lagging behind. Of the 44 law firms WILEF honored, none of them are New York based firms or firms with the highest profits per partner.

What is apparent is the struggle of sexes surrounding probably one of the most fundamental sectors of the society. In 2014, women lawyers earned approximately 83% of what their male legal counterparts earned. What is astounding is not the number, but that this still needed to be stated.