In its simplest form, an estate plan is a legal contract that designates how your wealth will be handled after passing away. However, the plan outlines so much more, including how you would like to be cared for as you grow older and the best tax options for your assets. An estate plan is the best way to ensure that all your wishes are met and your wealth is distributed at its fullest potential.
Why should I have an Estate Plan?
Your estate plan secures the future of your wealth so you do not have to worry about what will become of everything you worked hard for. Our estate planning process is designed to eliminate your concerns and help you to:
Control the future of your assets
Protect assets in the event of future incapacity or death
Offer protection and stability to your heirs
Avoid probate (when the state handles your wealth after death)
When should I visit an estate planning attorney?
We recommend that every adult speaks with an estate planning attorney to learn how an estate plan can benefit them. Specifically, here are a few examples of life milestones that signify a good time to consult with your estate planning attorney:
You recently had a baby or are a family with children.
What is probate? Probate is the legal process to distribute the estate of a person after they pass away. If the deceased person has no will and testament, the state law will determine how the assets are distributed.
What is a trust? A trust minimizes taxes and maximizes benefits for the person entitled to it. Trusts are a great way to distribute wealth to specific individuals.
What is a last will and testament? A last will and testament is the legal document that outlines how your wealth will be distributed after death.
What is an advance medical directive? Advance medical directives designate how you would like to receive medical care and treatments should you not be able to make the decision yourself.
What is the power of attorney? Power of attorney defines who has the authority to make your legal and financial decisions when you pass away or if you are no longer able to make them for yourself.