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Estate Planning

Estate planning is for every person, as everyone has an estate no matter how large or modest it is. Your estate is comprised of everything you own - your car, home, other real estate, checking and savings accounts, investments, life insurance, furniture, personal possessions. Since you can not take it with you when you die, you probably want to control how those things are given to the people or organization you care the most about. To ensure your wishes are carried out, you need to make a plan in advance naming who you want to receive the things you own, what they will receive and when they will receive it. 

However, good estate planning is much more than that. It should also include:

  1. Instructions for passing your values (religion, education, hard work, etc.) in addition to your valuables
  2. Instructions for your care if you become disabled
  3. Name a guardian and an inheritance manager for minor children
  4. Provide for family members with special needs without disrupting government benefits.
  5. Provide for loved ones who might be irresponsible with money or who may need future protection from creditors or divorce.
  6. Life insurance to provide for your family at your death, disability income insurance to replace your income if you cannot work due to illness or injury, and long-term care insurance to help pay for your care in case of an extended illness or injury.
  7. Provide for the transfer of your business at your retirement, disability, or death.
  8. Minimize taxes, court costs, and unnecessary legal fees.
  9. Be an ongoing process, not a one-time event. Your plan should be reviewed and updated as your family and financial situations (and laws) change over your lifetime.

We can provide you with names of excellent Estate Planning Attorneys we have worked with or work with your Estate Planning Attorney to help you achieve a successful estate plan. 

Knowing you have a properly prepared plan in place - one that contains your instructions and will protect your family - will give you and your family peace of mind. This is one of the most thoughtful and considerate things you can do for yourself and for those you love.