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Distributing Your Property When You die

We spend our lives accumulating money and property to make our lives pleasant and to provide for ourselves. Our Pocatello Estate Planning attorneys have over 70 years of experience helping our clients create a plan for distributing their money and property to others when they die. We recognize that making such decisions is personal and sometimes difficult. We take the time to work with our clients so that they can determine and define who their beneficiaries will be to receive their money and property. Our goal is to help each client have the peace of mind knowing they have a plan prepared.  

We understand that our clients each have money and property they have accumulated during their life. Our Pocatello Attorneys customize an estate plan with a focus of making sure our client’s final wishes are carried out when it comes to giving money and property to beneficiaries. Our Pocatello Estate Planning team is made up of partners Randy Budge and Lane Erickson, and attorneys Nathan Palmer and Dave Bagley. Having received the highest rankings from AVVO, Justia, and Martindale & Hubbell, we are confident that our team can help you and your family create a customized plan for you.

Why We Must Name Beneficiaries

The term beneficiary simply means the person or people you have named who you are giving money or property to when you die. It is most common to name beneficiaries in a written Last Will and Testament or in a written Trust. These individuals can be family members, friends, charities or even strangers. The important thing to understand is that the beneficiaries you name will receive whatever the specific asset you describe. Again, this could be property, homes, businesses, or money.

Keep in mind that there are many types of beneficiaries that can be named for various assets and property that you own. For example, life insurance, retirement accounts, annuities, and so forth are each a kind of asset that is not included in your estate. In other words, your Last Will and Testament and/or your written Trust will not determine who will receive monies from these assets. They are controlled by the contract that was signed when you obtained the asset. In that same contract you have the opportunity to name who the beneficiary will be. The easiest example for this type of asset is life insurance where you specifically name who the beneficiary is. Retirement accounts act in a similar way.

A beneficiary could also include a person who is a minor. Under Idaho law a minor is any person under the age of 18. Most people recognize that an underage person cannot receive or take care of money or property. For this reason, if you want any person under the age of 18 to receive all or a portion of your money or property you should name them as a beneficiary of a Minor Trust. This allows you to create a protected plan that will provide for that underaged person to benefit from the money and/or property you have given them without giving it to them directly.

Why It is Important to be Specific

Being specific in your written estate plan is vitally important. We sometimes have clients come to us with a plan that is not crafted well because it names a friend or relative they trust who “knows” what the person wants to do with their money and property. These clients assume the person they named will distribute money and property to their loved ones. However, we have found through our experiences in helping numerous clients that his is a bad idea because it eliminates our client’s ability to control the distributions that are made.

The reality is that most people really don’t “know” what you want to do unless you write it down. Additionally, there is the legal right of the person you name to keep the assets for themselves.

The simplest and best thing you can do is be simple and be specific with the people you name as your beneficiaries and the money or property they will receive. We can help you craft a customized estate plan that will do exactly what you want and will give money and property to exactly who you want to receive it. We pride ourselves in having the knowledge, experience and ability to guide and help our clients.

Enlist an Idaho Estate Planning Attorney to Help You

There are many ways that having a customized estate plan will help you, including making sure your beneficiaries receive the money and/or property you describe. Our Pocatello Attorneys are here to help you and your family. We are available to discuss your options and answer your questions at an initial consultation. Call us toll free at 877.232.6101 or 208.232.6101 for a consultation with the Racine Olson team of attorneys in Pocatello. You can also email us directly at We will answer your questions and will help you solve your Pocatello Estate Planning problems.

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