Estate Planning

What is Estate Planning Lawyer?

An estate planning lawyer is responsible for advising clients on how to get their affairs in order to prepare for the possibility of impending death or mental disability.

What do Estate Planning Lawyers do?

Estate planning is not just about a will.  Our attorneys specialize in drafting living trusts, plans to mitigate estate taxes and they work to ensure assets are safe from your beneficiaries’ creditors after your death.  They can also prepare health care directives and a power of attorney in the event you become incapacitated.  They can also avoid guardianship issues that may occur.

Basic Estate Planning

Regardless of the level of your wealth and assets, starting estate planning is imperative for the future.

The best thing to do to start the process of estate planning is to inventory tangible assets like homes, land, vehicles, collectibles, and other things of value.  Also, consider checking and savings accounts, life insurance policies and retirement plans.  It may also be a good idea to obtain a recent appraisal on your home and statements from all of your bank.

The next step is to account for your family.  Determine if you have enough life insurance to cover your mortgage and bills if your income disappears.  Name a guardian for your children to determine who they will be cared for by, without any court fights.  Also, ensure that you have documented your final wishes, so that your family can see what it is you desire for your family.

Then you should consider establishing directives.  A medical care directive will take effect if you are not able to make mental decisions for your health.  You also want to have a durable financial power of attorney.  Your appointed person can pay bills and deal with documents if you are unable.   Be careful about who you appoint, as you may want someone to be in charge of your health and someone else to be in charge of the financial sides of things.  You may also consider a trust, where portions of your assets are maintained by a trustee.  If you die, your estate will bypass probate, because you have a trust and a trustee to distribute according to your wishes.

Ensure to review your beneficiaries regularly, as they may not be alive when you ultimately pass.  Have a secondary beneficiary, known as a contingent beneficiary, on your account, like a child, that should be alive when your life is over.

Hire an attorney who specializes in estate planning, like Burgess Law Firm.  The fees that you will pay will be well worth the money and headache your family will save when you are gone.  Your family should not have to deal with the stress of your death and financial issues.  Let our estate planner lawyers get your affairs in order and create a customized estate plan that fits your needs.  Our lawyers will help you understand the tax laws in your state and ensure that your assets are protected from excessive taxes and fees.