Are you about to consider estate planning? What is estate planning by the way? Estate planning is the process of organizing the distribution of one’s assets to their heirs or beneficiaries. This is especially considered when an individual wishes to provide legal rights of his or her property in the event that he or she dies.
Family members, friends, business partners or even an anonymous third party person can be entitled to become an heir or a beneficiary.
There are things that are important for the success of estate planning. One thing involve in this undertaking is the search for the best estate planning lawyer. Consulting an estate-planning lawyer entails not only with manufacturing a will but also ensuring that the client’s requests regarding his or her property distribution would be granted upon death.
Furthermore, an estate-planning lawyer will do more than just establishing a client’s legal will because in the process of doing so, he or she must also be adept at minimizing taxes and fees associated with personal or real property. A contingency plan should also be set up in case unwanted events like family or legal disputes arise.
Other aspects that an estate-planning lawyer will deal with involve trusts, uniform probate code, gift tax, dynasty trust as well as joint tenancy. Besides just giving assistance to an individual’s will, an estate-planning lawyer can also help you with organizing any personal or business records like brokerage accounts, retirement plans, savings accounts, checking accounts, insurance, business interests, and even debt personal property. Any miscellaneous legal planning involved in the process of planning an estate is a concern and part of the duty of an employed estate-planning lawyer.
Now, when you look for an estate-planning lawyer you must consider first of all his or her educational background and work experience. The best estate-planning lawyer must be very educated and experienced particularly in the field of estate planning and strategies. It is imperative that your estate-planning lawyer is familiar with state laws since each state has varying laws when it comes to wealth distribution. Moreover, he or she must have excellent knowledge on how to get rid of excessive probate or estate tax while keeping himself or herself up to date with the ever-changing tax and estate laws. Of course, when choosing a qualified estate-planning lawyer, consider one that possesses a strong record. Determine by asking how long they have been specializing in estate planning. Search for one that has license to practice law in your state of residence. Actually, you can search for one by asking referrals from your close family and friends. If you are faced with end of life decisions after you have lost a loved one, seek help from a reliable and affordable estate planning attorney in Cedar City Utah.
Estate Planning Attorneys Help Clients Avoid Disputes Over Property And Assets
There are special circumstances that make estate planning more complex than usual. Whether it’s due to extensive amounts of property, multiple heirs or an unusual request regarding the distribution of assets, having estate attorneys guide clients through the legal process of leaving an inheritance can stop any disputes before they even start. Many estate attorneys will give their clients some very practical advice, and the following outlines the information that is considered to be the most important.
Hire Estate Attorneys Now To Avoid Litigation Lawyers Later
One of the most common causes of disputes over Wills and Trusts that prompt beneficiaries to hire a litigation lawyer is the notion they have been treated unfairly when it comes to their share of an inheritance. A professionally drafted Will or Trust can legally protect a deceased one’s final wishes, with the exception that some Wills can be contested in the courts. This is why it is especially important to hire an experienced professional who specializes in elder law to draft any documents pertaining to inheritances. Having a clause within a Will or Trust that specifies that heirs are to divide the assets amongst themselves can be another cause for courtroom showdowns. Even if it was the intention of the testator to avoid perpetuating the idea of favoritism by leaving specific possessions to certain beneficiaries, this tactic is known to cause more grief than good. In an effort to minimize the chances of a litigation lawyer becoming involved in the dispute, many estate attorneys advise their clients to divide their assets themselves and select which heirs receive which items, and how much each one is entitled to.
Intentional disinheritances should always be included in a Will or a Trust. Although it may be a tough decision to make, specifying individuals that they do not wish to inherit their property can leave little to no room for argument when it comes to the benefactor’s property and possessions. This is a very important measure to take – it not only protects the assets that are at stake, but also all of the other beneficiaries involved.
Avoiding Conflicts Of Interest
One rule to follow is to hire separate attorneys for each individual included in the planning process. This is the easiest way to avoid accusations that the lawyer may be favoring one person over others. While it may sound great in theory to have a group estate attorney that works on behalf of an entire family or set of beneficiaries, the fact is, it can lead to a whole new set of problems. Investing in a private estate attorney right away can limit the need for litigation lawyers down the road. In addition to retaining private counsel, clients should also consider hiring an executor outside of the family or group that will be inheriting property. Designating an heir to be the sole executor can quickly become a conflict of interest. Any charges of abuse of power can quickly be dismissed when the executor has no personal stake in their position.
Why You Need an Attorney for Estate Planning
If you believe estate planning is something you can do on a do-it-yourself basis, you might want to think again. The estate tax relief legislation raised the value of property that could be left free of estate tax by an individual to $5 million adjusted for inflation each year. Another crucial change involved reducing the highest federal estate tax rate to 40 percent. As a result, an increasing number of people want to avoid paying for the services of an attorney for this type of law. What they don’t realize is that estate planning is a complex business. All it takes is a single missing signature or incorrect word to alter a will or trust’s entire content. Keep reading to discover three compelling reasons why it is necessary to hire an attorney for estate planning.
Specific State Laws
Every state has its own laws when it comes to determining who can and can’t be in a trust, will, medical power of attorney, or financial power of attorney. There are also differences between the formalities that need to be observed when signing an estate planning document. What is required in Cedar City Utah may not be necessary in Arizona and vice versa. For example, some states require a personal representative to be related by marriage or blood, or else they need to be a resident of the state. Failure to meet the above criteria means that individual will not be allowed to serve as personal representative.
This is an old Latin saying that means “buyers beware.” The evolution of the Internet has led to a plethora of legal documents easily available online. This may make legal representation appear unnecessary. The trouble is that you can fill in your online forms quite happily, only to discover that part or all of your trust, will, financial power of attorney, or medical power of attorney is either invalid or doesn’t work as you expected. If this happens, your family may need to pay thousands of dollars to fix the mistake and will end up hiring an estate planning attorney in any case!
As we mentioned above, estate planning is a complex business, and if you own a business, are in your second marriage, have no children or children who are still minors, want to leave money to charity, or have real estate in another state, you will need the advice of an estate planning attorney. Indeed, there are dozens of other situations not outlined above where things can get complicated quickly. Regardless of how much research you have performed, you are likely to be lacking legal expertise, and this could prove costly. If you are unwilling to pay for an estate planning attorney in a bid to save money, it is likely your family will spend 3-5 times more money on the back-end. In order to make things easier for your loved ones and to alleviate any stress you may feel, get in touch with a trustworthy real estate attorney today.
How to Find the Best Estate Planning Attorney for Your Family
The importance of proper estate planning need not be stressed. When you hear the word estate, it refers to everything you worked hard for. Your home, money in bank accounts, investments in stocks, mutual funds and bonds, cars, life insurance, business and others. Without proper estate planning, your beneficiaries will most likely be inconvenienced with all the requirements in settling your estate.
In Cedar City Utah, the key to having well-prepared estate planning documents is to hire the best Cedar City Utah estate planning lawyer for your family. The qualities you need to look for include the following;
• Professional: You should hire a Cedar City Utah estate planning lawyer that is highly professional. Aside from being state-licensed and having an extensive experience in estate planning, your lawyer should value your importance as a client and establish a great relationship with you. Your Cedar Utah estate planning lawyer should also provide you with counseling together with excellent listening skills. Of course, you will need to have an estate planning lawyer that you can talk to on all levels and will maintain proper attitude at all times. In some cases, you will need to discuss with your lawyer sensitive issues involving your family and your lawyer should remain objective and respectful of your wishes.
• Ethical: Since estate planning will deal with a lot of your assets, you should hire a Cedar estate planning lawyer that is reliable and trust-worthy. Your estate planning lawyer should consider all your needs above everything and work hard to ensure your family’s needs are be met as well. Having the right set of values should also be an important factor to consider and you can determine if your estate planning lawyer has this if he provides you with suggestions and advice that are legal and morally right.
• Committed: This quality is perhaps the most important trait you should look for to hire the best Cedar estate planning lawyer. Your lawyer should be committed in working out all details in your estate and will not have problems working with your investment advisor, accountant and insurance professional. The best estate planning lawyer would never think of your estate plans as a one-time deal but will consider it to be a long arduous process that should be done meticulously and thoroughly.
With all these qualities, you can be sure that your estate plans will be completed and executed as you wanted.
Estate Planning Attorney: Preparing for a Meeting
You don’t technically need to do anything to prepare for a meeting with an estate planning attorney. Just having taken the step to set up a meeting is more than many people take, and you should be proud and confident in your decision to move forward with responsible financial progress. One of the worst things a person can do to their heirs is to leave their assets in disarray. More often than not, it leads to infighting, resentment, and family problems that can last a long time. You can avoid all of that by making specific plans ahead of time. While you can think through specific decisions with your lawyer, here are some things you may want to discuss prior to your meeting.
If you have kids under the age of 18, one of the first things you need to think about is who act as their guardian should you will be unable to. So many parents fail to think of this, and it can have dire consequences for the child. You don’t want your child to wind up as a ward of the state, moving through foster homes, and experiencing a very unstable life after you’re gone. No one likes the idea of preparing for the worst, but you should do so. Think about who will take care of your kids before meeting with your estate planning attorney, as this is one decision he’ll be unable to help you with.
If you were ever to reach the point where you couldn’t handle your own finances, who would you want put in charge of them? Some feel comfortable entrusting financial control to an estate planning attorney or another professional in the field. Others want control handed over to a relative. This is up to you, but it is another important thing you need to think about. When you’re healthy and loving life, it seems nearly absurd to consider such an unlikely scenario. But it happens all the time. Make arrangements while you’re of sound mind.<
What will become of your money, assets, and property after you’ve died? For those who have none of these things (and there are certainly more than a few people who can say this), it is of little concern. But if you have savings and ownership of property, you need to consider who will receive it should you pass away. This is something you can discuss with an estate planning attorney, but it is a decision you’ll ultimately have to make on your own.
Free Initial Consultation with Lawyer
It’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when. Legal problems come to everyone. Whether it’s your son who gets in a car wreck, your uncle who loses his job and needs to file for bankruptcy, your sister’s brother who’s getting divorced, or a grandparent that passes away without a will -all of us have legal issues and questions that arise. So when you have a law question, call Ascent Law for your free consultation (801) 676-5506. We want to help you!
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States
Telephone: (801) 676-5506