Estate Planning 101: Basics You Need to Know

Estate Planning 101: Basics You Need to Know

Do you have a plan in place for when you are no longer with us? Estate planning involves both planning for the possibility of mental incapacity and planning for certain death. It’s more than just planning to distribute your assets, though. It’s actually more of a life-planning tool.

What steps should you take to get started now?

  • We always recommend you contact an experienced attorney as they can make sure all the documents are prepared in a way that minimizes the chances of litigation, while maximizing the ease of administration when you pass on. Omni Law Groups’ attorneys have vast experience in both general and advanced estate planning techniques.
  • Take an inventory of your assets. Ask yourself who you want to inherit what, who you want handling your financial matters if you’re incapacitated and who you want to make your medical decisions.
  • Work with your attorney to create a will and trust. These legal mechanisms can save your heirs costly fees and protect your assets from creditors and lawsuits.
  • Discuss your plans with your heirs. This will help prevent disputes once you’re incapacitated or pass on, and can help you resolve issues before you’re gone.

Taking these steps now can help you avoid probate, the expensive and time-consuming court-supervised distribution of your assets. Planning ahead can help you avoid this less-than-ideal circumstance.

In addition to making sure your will and trust are in place, you can work with your attorney to:

  • Create a joint tenancy, or equal ownership over property with someone such as a spouse or child. There are pros and cons to this strategy, which can include significant tax ramifications.
  • Start giving your property away while you’re still alive. Make sure you find out how much you can give away while avoiding the gift tax before you start getting too generous.
  • Set up a family limited liability company to pass on your wealth in a way that allows you to maintain control of your assets during your life.

Do you want more advice specifically tailored to your financial situation? Contact us to find out more!

Photo Credit: Victor1558

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