Why Estate Planning Is Important
Estate planning is the crucial process of designating who will make decisions about your healthcare and personal assets on behalf of your wishes. Particularly if you have a desire to ensure your estate delivers benefits beyond retirement and produces a lasting legacy after you have passed. It is paramount that your Estate Plan identify who should handle it, how it should be handled, and how to implement any available tax reducing strategies to maximize your legacy benefits.
What We Can Do For You:
- Helping you understand the importance of a Will: Your Will should be the cornerstone of your Estate Plan. We can help you understand why and how you should structure this document so your legal team can create a Will that reflects how you want your estate distributed.
- Creating Powers of Attorney (POA) & Advanced Medical Directives: Whether it’s to manage specific assets, like your investments, bank accounts or real estate holdings; or whether it’s meant to help others make health care decisions in your best interest in case you are incapacitated, you need to have the appropriate documents in place to ensure your wishes are followed. These appointments will also lay out directions in regard to your final arrangements and those related to your estate, should your situation require assistance from a family member or professional.
- Choosing Executors: The Executors of your Estate wield strong powers that determine how your Estate is finally dealt with upon your passing. We’ll help you understand the importance of choosing an executor for your Estate, and what criteria you should consider when appointing someone to discharge this important appointment, especially if minor children and guardians are involved.
- Designating beneficiaries: If you don’t choose beneficiaries for your assets carefully, or not at all, your estate assets might end up in the hands of individuals that you never intended should benefit from them, or take significantly longer for your beneficiaries to receive the assets.
- Considerations for dependents needs: A well thought out Estate Plan will ensure that all the needs of your dependents are taken care of in accordance with your desires, be they minors, adult children, siblings, persons with special needs or aging parents.
- Trust establishment & tax planning considerations: Without an Estate Plan, a considerable part of your estate could erode through Estate taxes, Probate fees, or other unforeseen complications prior to any distributions to your designated beneficiaries. There are multiple trust options and strategies that may be of significant importance in structuring your estate.
- Protecting your estate: Though you might no longer be here, many of your assets, like your long-term investments, property and other tangible assets, will likely need care, protection, and management until they are finally disposed of, and the proceeds distributed to your designated beneficiaries. In the absence of an Estate Plan, your assets will likely not receive the type and level of maintenance and protection those assets require.
- Health and welfare considerations: A comprehensive Estate Plan contains several components, including directives to your Executors and POA-holders about what to do in case your health (mental or physical) deteriorates. In the absence of those appointments and components of your Estate Plan, decisions impacting your health and welfare might be made by medical professionals or state-appointed representatives, or others whom you did not appoint.
- Distributing your assets/legacy: Without a proper Estate plan, your assets might not be distributed in line with your final wishes. We will work with you, your appointed representatives, and your legal team to ensure your Will and Estate Plan are in sync and that the distribution and disposition of your estate are handled accordingly.