Wills, Living Wills, and Trusts A Brief Overview of Estate Planning

Those who die without a personal will create problems for survivors and for society in general. These deaths are considered to be intestate, which means that the laws of that state determine how the decedent’s assets are to be divided and distributed.
Under the intestate principle, the distribution process will be carried out by a probate court. The assets will first go to the surviving spouse or domestic partner. They can also be distributed among other relatives, including children, siblings or, in some cases, to distant relatives. If no relatives can be found and identified, the assets will go to the state. Unmarried partners can find themselves completely left out in terms of receiving assets. Those who have relatives and die intestate can also make it difficult for others by delaying the distribution process. A family will alleviates these problems.
You may have asked yourself, Can I create my own will? A legal will must be in writing and should be signed in front of witnesses. You can also go to the internet to find the best online will and trust creation program. However, estate planning attorneys can make the process easier for everyone.

Those who die without a personal will create problems for survivors and for society in general. These deaths are considered to be intestate, which means that the laws of that state determine how the decedent’s assets are to be divided and distributed.
Under the intestate principle, the distribution process will be carried out by a probate court. The assets will first go to the surviving spouse or domestic partner. They can also be distributed among other relatives, including children, siblings or, in some cases, to distant relatives. If no relatives can be found and identified, the assets will go to the state. Unmarried partners can find themselves completely left out in terms of receiving assets. Those who have relatives and die intestate can also make it difficult for others by delaying the distribution process. A family will alleviates these problems.
You may have asked yourself, Can I create my own will? A legal will must be in writing and should be signed in front of witnesses. You can also go to the internet to find the best online will and trust creation program. However, estate planning attorneys can make the process easier for everyone.

Those who die without a personal will create problems for survivors and for society in general. These deaths are considered to be intestate, which means that the laws of that state determine how the decedent’s assets are to be divided and distributed.
Under the intestate principle, the distribution process will be carried out by a probate court. The assets will first go to the surviving spouse or domestic partner. They can also be distributed among other relatives, including children, siblings or, in some cases, to distant relatives. If no relatives can be found and identified, the assets will go to the state. Unmarried partners can find themselves completely left out in terms of receiving assets. Those who have relatives and die intestate can also make it difficult for others by delaying the distribution process. A family will alleviates these problems.
You may have asked yourself, Can I create my own will? A legal will must be in writing and should be signed in front of witnesses. You can also go to the internet to find the best online will and trust creation program. However, estate planning attorneys can make the process easier for everyone.

Elder law attorney

There are a variety of situations where consulting with a business lawyer as well as an estate planning attorney is important. This is particularly the case when important legal documents such as wills, living trusts, and powers of attorney are required.

Wills

Recent figures show that 64% of people in the United States don’t have a will. For individuals within the 55 to 64 age bracket, roughly 51% do not have this important document. When a person is under 40 and does not have a will drawn up yet, it is a good idea to do so.

Living Wills and Trusts

The number of seniors that have drawn up living wills, or advance directives, has actually increased over the years. In 2000, for example, just 47% of seniors had these documents. By 2010, however, 72% of senior citizens had these documents created.

While it does depend on a person’s individual income and assets, an estate planning attorney may recommend that their clients create a trust as well as a will. This can assist with minimizing estate taxes as well as avoiding probate, particularly when someone has 6-figure assets or higher.

When someone owns a successful business, for example, it is important to have its value determined. This is where a business attorney can provide valuable services. If the business’ ownership is going to be transferred to the beneficiaries, for example, a business lawyer can assist with this transition. Furthermore, if the beneficiaries choose to sell this business, then a business lawyer may provide them with legal advice and counsel in this regard.

Bequests and Federal Tax Exemptions

Bequests are gifts that can be given to individuals upon a person’s death. During 2015, the estate-tax exemptions allowed individuals to leave bequests that were valued up to $5.43 million without the recipients having to pay federal estate taxes.

A single person that inherits an estate valued at less than $5.43 million, for example, is exempt from federal estate taxes. Married couples are exempt from federal estate taxes when the estate is valued at less than $10.86 million. If the estate is valued higher than these amounts, then federal estate taxes are required.

Power of Attorney

The Joint Editorial Board for Uniform Trust and Estate Acts conducted a national survey. The results of this survey showed that a majority of the respondents experienced challenges when attempting to obtain an acceptance of powers of attorney. Occasional difficulty was reported by 63% of the respondents, while 17% of the respondents reported that they experienced frequent difficulties.

When an individual has been appointed to disperse property and assets, they have been given a power of attorney,. Unless this individual is exempt under the conditions of a will, they must file an inventory of the estate within 60 days after their appointment. Furthermore, they must also swear to the accuracy of this inventory.

It is an unfortunate fact that many individuals abuse their powers of attorney. While comprehensive statistics are not readily available, the MetLife Mature Market Institute does track the financial losses that result from elder financial abuse, according to the Wall Street Journal. In 2009 alone, this amounted to $2.6 billion.

When a qualified attorney drafts documents to nominate a Health Care Proxy and a Durable Power of Attorney, it can cost between $500.000 to $1,500.00. This will depend on several factors, which an estate attorney can explain.

Scheduling a Consultation

Since estate planning can be challenging, scheduling a consultation with an attorney can assist with streamlining this process. Furthermore, since estate planning attorneys have experience within this field, they are able to anticipate a variety of issues that an individual may not have considered.

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