Estate planning may seem morbid, particularly if you are young and healthy; however, it doesn’t have to be that way. It helps to think of it as a kindness and responsibility toward your loved ones. Sadly, the future is not guaranteed, and accidents happen. Even if it is highly unlikely that your estate needs to be passed to your loved ones any time soon, they deserve to be well cared for when you pass on.
A lawyer can kindly and compassionately guide you through the process of estate planning. Estate planners strive to make the process as straightforward, simple, and painless as possible. Estate planning can enter complicated territory, especially when taxes are part of the mix. These issues must be addressed, so consulting with an estate planning attorney, provides an opportunity to discuss your situation and learn what can be done for you. Estate planning lawyers can help with various areas of estate law, including:
Business law is extremely significant with regard to estate planning. Estate attorneys can work to ensure that your business assets and property are transferred to the appropriate party or parties and is taken care of in your absence.
After your death, your assets and property will be distributed to your beneficiaries—your family and any loved ones named in your will. Your estate planner can help you designate your own executor to administer the estate. If you do not choose an executor, the court will name one, and that person may not handle your property according to your wishes.
Powers of Attorney
When you appoint a power of attorney, they have legal responsibility for your assets and property during your lifetime. Then, after you’ve passed on, the power of attorney dissolves.
Probate proceedings deal with repaying creditors, sorting and distributing assets and property, and validating your will. In probate, the court typically handles the matter of your estate administration. Probate can be time-consuming and costly, so many people take steps to avoid it.
A trust is a legal document and agreement that outlines the handling of your property. You appoint an administrator to oversee the trust, which holds your assets and property for a beneficiary. A trust can be established while you are alive (living trust), or after your death (estate administration).
Many people choose to create a Last Will and Testament. This document ensures that your property is distributed according to your wishes. It is crucial to draft a detailed, unambiguous will that outlines the terms of your property and asset distribution.
An attorney can assist with these different aspects of estate planning. By retaining the services of a highly educated and knowledgeable legal professional, you’ll be getting help from someone who is experienced in estate law, real estate law, federal tax law, business law, and more. The sooner you start working with an estate planning lawyer, the better. Call an attorney in your area today to schedule an appointment to learn more about planning your estate and providing for your loved ones.