Estate planning is an important task that everyone should accomplish. You may think that estate planning is only for those who have accumulated a lot of wealth. However, everyone has an estate-whether it's a large estate or a small one. If not handled properly, it may cause problems for loved ones when you're gone.
Estate planning is the process of anticipating and arranging for the management and disposal of that person's estate while minimizing gift, state and federal estate tax, generation skipping tax, and income tax. Estate Planning involves the drafting of Wills, various Trusts (revocable, irrevocable, testamentary, life insurance trusts, "Bypass" trusts, "QTIP" trusts, asset-protection trusts and others, to accomplish various goals), as well as drafting various ancillary estate planning documents such as Financial Power of Attorney and Advance Medical Directive. In general, your estate is comprised of all the things you own. For example, you likely have cars, a house, property, life insurance, retirement funds, bank accounts, furniture, and more. An estate plan is a guideline of how you want your items handled after death. Among benefits for establishing estate planning now are:
One of the best things you can do now while you are alert and mentally capable is decide who among your loved ones will get what items from your estate when you are gone. You can never assume your estate will be handled properly without having your desires in writing. An estate plan consists of legal documents that hold up in court. If you don't have an estate plan, then it may take several months to years and a lot of strife before your estate is even distributed. Then, on top of that, it may not be distributed the way you wanted. For example, if you have more than one child, there may be confusion and misunderstanding as to who is supposed to get what.
An effective estate plan helps reduce some of the potential taxes that may be incurred such as income, gift, and inheritance tax. Through proper planning, an attorney can set up your estate distribution in such a way as to minimize taxes. Your heirs will have less tax burden, allowing them to get the maximum benefit from your estate.
If you have young children under the age of 18, then estate planning is critical to provide for and protect your children. Designate who you want to be guardians for your children and who will provide for your children financially if both parents should die. If you do not select someone to care for your children and something would happen, then the courts will have to make the decision for you.
Estate planning is an important and highly personal matter. At Avrine Law Firm we strive to make this process go as smoothly and efficiently as possible. We guide you through the process and work with you to design the estate plan that is the best fit for your situation. Contact us today for more information and to set up your free Initial Estate Planning Consultation.
I highly recommend Iryna for your estate planning, she is so professional, intelligent, organized and sweet. I just finished mine with her today she took time to answer my question and concern and brainstormed ideas to satisfy form my unique plan, I can't be thankful enough. Now I can sleep better knowing a major thing in my life is taken care of. Thank you Iryna!