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Collectibles often an overlooked area of property distribution

Most people in Texas are likely aware of the importance of estate planning. While many know to whom they are going to give their money or real estate, they may be unsure about the future of a collection — a collection that they may have spent a great deal of time, money and effort collecting. However, collectibles are also a part of property distribution, and putting some time and thought into the future of a collection may be wise.

The types of collections people can have are limitless. If a collection has monetary value, an important step is it get the collection appraised. From there, a person has several options for how to handle it. The collection could be sold, and the proceeds distributed according to a person’s wishes. The collection could also be passed on to one’s loved ones, or it could be gifted to a charity or museum.

When one chooses the latter option, it may be necessary to establish a trust in order to help a museum care for the items. If donated, there could be special tax considerations. Regardless, it may help family members to have a discussion regarding how the collection will be handled and to determine if a family member is interested in preserving it.

Because of the effort put into a collection, having its fate settled can often give a person peace of mind. Putting forethought and planning into property distribution can help ease the stress a family will face in the event of a family member’s death or sudden, serious illness. Because of tax and other considerations, consulting an estate planning attorney in Texas is often a good option to ensure that assets are handled properly.

Source:, “Estate Planning and Your Collectibles“, Ray and Dana Brandon, April 16, 2015