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Estate Planning

A Health Care Directive helps you communicate your wishes as to medical care, should you become terminally ill, incompetent or otherwise unable to participate in medical decisions.

Living Trust

A Living Trust is a trust that is created during your lifetime when you transfer your assets into a trust to be administered by a trustee. A Living Trust can avoid probate if you transfer all of your property into it. However, the cost of establishing and maintaining a Living Trust may be greater than any financial savings gained by avoiding probate. Consult legal counsel to determine whether a Living Trust would benefit you. A Living Trust does not avoid litigation between your beneficiaries but only changes the forum for these contests from Probate Court to District Court. (Lawsuits in District Court are normally open to the public.)


A Will is a document that governs the disposition of your probate property after your death. A will can be changed at any time until you become incompetent or pass away. A Will does not affect the use of your property during your life.

Affidavit Of Survivorship

An Affidavit of Survivorship is filed with the County Recorder’s Office, along with a certified copy of a decedent’s Death Certificate to transfer a decedent’s joint tenancy interest or life estate interest in real property. This Affidavit should be prepared by a lawyer.

Joint Tenancy Deeds

A Joint Tenancy Deed transfers real estate for the purpose of creating a joint tenancy between the grantees. When one of the “joint tenant owners” passes away, the real estate passes directly to the surviving joint tenant(s) without a probate proceeding (upon the filing of an Affidavit of Survivorship).

Transfer On Death Deeds

Transfer on Death Deeds (TODDs) deeds allows owners of real estate to possess the real property during the term of their natural life. Upon the death of the last surviving grantor under the TODD, the real estate passes to the grantee(s) without a probate proceeding (upon the filing of an Affidavit of Survivorship). TODDs are revocable as long as the grantor(s) remain competent and have not passed away and do not shield the real property from medical assistance liens.


Probate is a judicial proceeding that allows a judge to transfer the ownership of assets from your name to those of your beneficiaries after your death. Generally, probate may be avoided through a number of methods, including joint ownership of assets with rights of survivorship between yourself and your spouse or other beneficiaries.

Selection Of Guardian

Minn. Stat., Section 525.54 allows you to name, in advance, the individual(s) you want to serve as your guardian(s) should you later become incapacitated.

What Is Medical Assistance?

Medical Assistance (“MA”) is a Federal/State/County program that assists eligible citizens in paying for the cost of long-term nursing care.

MA Estate Planning Examples

Re-allocating income to the “at-home” spouse, asset transfer to the “at- home” spouse, purchasing appropriate assets, and long-term care insurance may be helpful in your case.

MA Information

Anoka County Financial Services Department

Chisago County Human Services

Hennepin County Community Services – Elderly & Disabled Assistance Information & Intake

Isanti County Family Services & Welfare Dept.

Ramsey County Community Human Services

Washington County Community Social Services Economic Assistance

Consult legal counsel to determine the applicability of the information in this website to your circumstances. The information contained in this website is not intended to provide legal advice to you and you should not rely on this information other than to obtain a general understanding of the concepts and terms discussed.