Estate planning is an effective way for individuals to plan for their future and lay out the specifics on how they wish to provide for their family and loved ones at death. Estate planning can help avoid a number of complications and drawn-out legal issues that can arise when an individual dies intestate (without a
will). It does not matter whether your estate is small or large, there are benefits you and your loved ones can gain from estate planning:
Avoid Probate –
Probate can be a very time-consuming and costly process. There is also no guarantee that your loved ones will be provided for or get the assets and property you wanted them to receive if there is no will stating your intentions and wishes. Estate planning can help cut through the red tape, bypass probate and allow your loved ones to receive the assets and property in a timely fashion and as you intended.
- Reduce Estate Taxes – Estate taxes can also be significantly reduced by proper estate planning. Most people do not want their families to have to pay heavy taxes on their estate, thus lowering the value of the assets they inherit. By preparing a living trust, will and other key estate planning documents you may be able lessen the impact taxes will have on your estate after your death.
- Protect Your Loved Ones – For those individuals who are married, have children or who care for another person with special needs, estate planning is a way in which they can protect their beneficiaries and see that they are adequately provided for in the future. Guardianship can also be established through estate planning so that you know who will care for your children and provide for their needs.
Designate Power of Attorney – Individuals who want to have a say in their health care in the event they become incapacitated or unable to speak on their own behalf, are urged to draw up an
Advanced Health Care Directive (AHCD) as part of their estate planning. An AHCD helps alleviate the pain and struggle family members of loved ones may go through in an attempt to determine end of life care. With an AHCD and
durable powers of attorney, you will be able to know with certainty that your wishes will be carried out.
- Maintain Peace – The possibility of one or more family members receiving a portion of a loved one's estate can sometimes put the entire family at odds. Estate planning will allow you to let your loved ones know you care and that you took the time to provide for their needs. It can also help quell any arguments or disagreements that would be likely to take place if you were to die intestate.
Most of all, estate planning will give you a peace of mind knowing that your affairs are in order and that you have addressed all of your concerns about the future. There is no reason to delay estate planning. The time to act is now and the firm is ready to assist you with all of your estate planning needs.
Contact Shelley Rios, Attorney at Law
Over the years, the firm has helped provide countless individuals and families with the compassionate and understanding representation their circumstances required. When you obtain the firm's services, a Burbank probate attorney from the firm will take the time to discuss your objectives and help devise an all-encompassing estate plan that will meet your needs. The firm also provides legal representation to individuals who have recently lost a loved one and need assistance navigating the probate process. To find out more or to get the estate planning process started, contact Shelley Rios, Attorney at Law right away.