What Is Estate Planning?

by | Jul 28, 2020 | With Your Family in Mind

Estate Planning addresses two very important areas:

In the event you become incapacitated, estate planning documents name who will make financial and health care decisions for you. They also provide your instructions for the person or persons you name to follow in carrying out your financial and health care decisions.
Estate planning documents offer protection by providing for the orderly disposition of your assets upon your ultimate passing and according to your specific instructions.
Properly drafted estate planning documents provide the time and manner your beneficiaries will receive your assets, preserve the maximum amount of wealth possible by minimizing tax liability, appoint an agent or agents to make financial and health care decisions for you in the event you are unable to do so yourself, and name a guardian for your minor children (if applicable).
Depending on your assets, a “revocable living trust” may be recommended to avoid the lengthy and often expensive probate process. Assets properly funded into a trust are not subject to probate or probate fees. A revocable living trust also permits you to specify at what age and in what amount your named beneficiaries shall receive their distributions upon your passing. This can be a valuable tool if a beneficiary, in your opinion, is not mature enough to manage their share of your trust estate due to age or financial problems. For example, you might specify that a particular child is to receive their share in three stages with equal distributions at age 21, 25 and 28. Until that beneficiary attains the required ages, their share is managed for them by the successor trustee of the trust. It is also important to realize that a revocable living trust may be easily amended as your assets and circumstances change throughout the remainder of your lifetime.
Estate planning is often a delicate and uncomfortable topic to consider. However, by planning in advance you can protect your family and loved ones from much anxiety and expense later.
For more information please contact the Law Office of Sean D. Ethington at (661)295-4604 or visit our website at www.ElderLawSite.com.

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