What Elements Of Your Estate Plan Are Missing Or Need Updating?
Everyone’s asset portfolio and family circumstances are unique. The elements of your estate plan will depend on what property you own, whom you trust to watch out for you if you become incapacitated and how you intend for your assets to be distributed someday.
Putting your testamentary documents in order is a valuable goal to pursue. If you are a business owner, a spouse or a parent, you might even consider it a moral obligation to other people in your life. The attorneys at Secured Legacy Law Firm will help you review the elements of your estate plan that need attention, such as the following:
- A will: Even a one-page simple will is better than none at all. Without a will, you are setting up your heirs for expense, trouble and delays in settling your affairs if you should die unexpectedly. Many people devise complex wills that include trusts and express preferences for potential guardians of their children if needed. What if your assets are in trusts? You should still have a pour-over will to account for any assets that come into your estate near the time of your death, such as income tax refunds, civil litigation proceeds, life insurance payouts and more.
- A farm or business succession plan: This is not really part of your estate plan, but rather, part of your business plan. However, if you own a farm or one or more businesses, you will want your will, trusts and business succession plans to be in harmony to prevent potential probate litigation.
- One or more trusts: You may want to establish a revocable or irrevocable trust, a special needs trust, a generation-skipping trust or another type of trust. Trusts can keep most of your assets out of probate court and make your beneficiaries’ tasks much simpler when the time comes to manage your estate.
- Powers of attorney: If you are incapacitated, missing or otherwise unable to manage your affairs, someone named in one or more powers of attorney can handle your assets for you. The person you name as your agent will be able to sell your home, access your financial accounts to pay your bills and otherwise act in your place, managing your assets, debts and financial affairs.
- A “living will” or health care directive: If you are incapacitated without hope of recovery, do you want doctors to keep you alive at all costs or allow you to die as painlessly as possible? Would you want a blood transfusion or feeding tube if these things could prolong your life? In an advance directive, you can specify your wishes. Such a document can prevent much trouble and uncertainty between family members or between your family and your doctor(s).
Let’s Review Your Testamentary Documents
Perhaps your will needs updating after a divorce. Or perhaps you created a trust but never titled your assets to the trust. A review of your estate plan’s elements will demonstrate what you need to add or fix.
To schedule a consultation with an estate lawyer, call us at 786-744-4105 or send an email inquiry.