Estate planning is an area that many people postpone or even neglect for various reasons. Many believe it is an issue for which only the elderly or the very wealthy should be concerned. However, if you own anything at all, you have an estate and you can benefit from creating a plan. These plans will not only protect your assets and ensure your family members obtain the assets you designate, they can provide instructions and safeguards for other matters as well. They can address many financial, legal, and even personal affairs.
As a Franklin estate planning lawyer, I can help you understand how estate plans work, educate you on the various legal tools and options available, and assist you in designing a customized estate plan that will work for you. Your plan will address the specifics of your estate, your personalized needs, and your goals in passing on your property to your loved ones and other beneficiaries. A well-crafted estate plan includes precise documents that are generally deemed to be legally binding and enforceable by the courts.
As mentioned above, estate plans consists of various legal tools and documents designed for many different purposes.
- Wills and trusts. Wills form the foundation of your plan by identifying your assets, your heirs and beneficiaries and how you wish your assets to be distributed. Trusts place your assets in an independent legal entity managed by your designated trustee who will pass your assets on according to your instructions.
- Powers of Attorney. These documents designate a trusted person to act on your behalf in the management of life or financial affairs when you are unable to do so.
- Conservatorships. These legal relationships authorize a person to have decision-making power over someone who has been deemed to be temporarily or permanently incapacitated.
Proper estate planning can preserve the value of your property and assets, reduce the timeframe in passing on those assets to your beneficiaries, and ensure that your wishes as to how your estate is passed on are carried out. It can provide instructions for how these actions should occur upon your passing as well as how you would like certain matters to be handled should you become incapacitated and unable to express your wishes. It can designate a guardian for minor children, include an advanced directive regarding medical care in certain situations, can minimize tax consequences, and save your loved ones from having to make difficult decisions when under the distress of your loss.
An estate plan helps assure that the disposition of your assets is carried out according to your wishes. Furthermore, creating an estate plan will save your loved one’s undue stress after you have passed away. Your estate plan can include a will, trust, Powers of Attorney and advanced directives. Not having an estate plan in place could result in relatives, friends, and charities receiving nothing. An estate plan reduces the chance of disputes or litigation that can diminish the value of your estate.
Knowing you have an estate plan that protects your assets as well as your loved ones can give you peace of mind. My priority as your estate planning lawyer is to ensure that your plan is comprehensive, clear, and specific to your needs and that it is updated or maintained when needed.
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Reach out to Shanone Emmack Attorney at Law online or at (615) 205-8183 to arrange for your free estate planning consultation at our law firm today.
She researches the law, kept me and others informed on what needs to happen next, and was always professional.Nancy D.