What is an estate plan?
An estate plan details how to transfer the right property to the right people in the right way at the right time. This includes a plan for your assets like your home, cars, investment accounts, retirement accounts or pensions, insurance and any other important personal belongings.
Having an estate plan in place:
- Assures that you and your spouse's affairs are handled the way you wish
- Allows you to avoid probate court
- Reduces estate taxes by placing property and other assets in trusts
- Enables you to make provisions to care for and protect children and other beneficiaries
- Protects your assets from unforeseen creditors or lawsuits
Benefits of an Estate Plan
Estate planning protects your assets for the benefit of future generations.
Estate Planning Tools
A thoughtful plan can make a difference for you and your loved ones.
Trustee and Estate Administration Services
While many individuals rely on family or friends to settle their affairs, delegating these demanding and complex tasks is smart. Eliminate undue stress by assigning the responsibility to an experienced trustee or administrator.
As your trustee, we act as your fiduciary to carry out the terms of your trust exactly as you planned. We can act as sole trustee, co-trustee or successor trustee. We can also provide advice for all states of estate administration to ensure timely, specific execution of your estate plan.
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If you do not have a will when you die, the state, by law, dictates where your property goes. These laws are referred to as intestacy laws.
Without a Financial Power of Attorney, financial decisions cannot be made until someone (presumably a family member) retains an attorney and petitions the court to appoint a guardian of your estate.
Without a Healthcare Power of Attorney, healthcare decisions cannot be made for you until someone (presumably a family member) retains an attorney and petitions the court to appoint a guardian of the person for you.
A revocable trust is subject to change or amendment; an irrevocable trust cannot be amended.
Property owned by your revocable trust is not protected from your creditors, including a nursing home.
When you leave your property in a trust for your children, the trust can be designed to protect the property from your children’s creditors, including a divorcing spouse.
A family mission statement is a critical document to communicate your wishes and beliefs to key decision makers. It can help ensure that they will make the same decisions you would make if you were alive. Do you need one? No. Do you want one? Without question.
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COVID-19 and the Importance of Estate Planning Documents
For some it can be uncomfortable to contemplate estate planning, but in these uncertain times it is more important than ever that you have these documents in place.READ MORE about the importance of having estate planning documents in place during the times of crisis.
Planning Opportunities Under The CARES Act
The CARES Act provides approximately $2.2 Trillion of economic relief and stimulus designed to help the United States economy and its citizens endure the shutdowns and hardships caused by the Coronavirus. While the CARES Act has several different provisions and areas of focus, the purpose of this blog is to focus on some key planning opportunities created by this Act.READ MORE about how to build a plan to handle uncertain times.
This website may contain concepts that have legal, accounting, tax, and investment implications. It is not intended to provide legal, accounting, or tax advice and is not a recommendation to buy or sell any investment.
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