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What Are The Basic Items In A Typical Estate Plan?

A standard estate plan would include four essential documents, a will, last will and testament, a revocable living trust and a durable power of attorney for financial decisions and a durable power of attorney for healthcare decisions.

Obviously the trust and the will are more like after death documents. The healthcare power of attorney and durable power of attorney for financial matters, are life documents meaning they would be used while the person was still alive, in case they could not make those decisions on their own.

It Does Not Take Long To Create An Estate Plan

It would usually take about a week to 14 days to get everything done and finalized.

Estate Plans Require Certain Parties To Be Involved

This would depend on whether or not the person was married. Any estate plan would need to have the settler or the testator, and this would be the person who created the plan. This would be either a man, a woman or it could even be a couple. It would also be important to know their children, if they had any, or who the beneficiaries or heirs were. They would likely be the ones inheriting from the estate.

It would also be really important to know who the executor or who the personal representative would be for the estate plan. That would be the person who is “in-charge”. They would need to take charge of the estate and follow the plan and what had been set forth in the will for the trust.

These people would surely be needed for an estate plan, although it would always be a good idea to have a backup, a plan B, so to speak. If the person had somebody who they really knew, liked and trusted, then they would be “in-charge” and could be called the personal representative. In case that person was deceased by this time or were simply not able to fulfill that role, then in that case it would be important to have somebody as a number two. It would definitely not hurt to have one, two or three people in a specific order to fulfill that role. That way, the person’s bases would be covered if something happened to the first or second person.

The attorney would also need to know if there were young children or if there were guardianship issues so the parties could decide who would take care of the little kids. If someone had a large estate, however, then they might not want the person who was the guardian to be the conservator, meaning they would not want the same person to be in-charge of the money.

Two separate people could be assigned to this. That way there would be a check and a balance in place so, for example, somebody does not buy a Ferrari with the money that actually belonged to the children.

The attorney would also need to know what the party’s assets were, such as their bank account and investment information and whether the parties had an investment advisor, in which case the attorney would need their name and contact information.  If the parties had an insurance person, the attorney would also need their contact information, along with the contact information of any accountant or CPA they were working with.

The parties would need to list the assets they could put in to determine how to plan the estate. The assets and the person’s profession would help to decide what kind of plan needed to be created. Someone who was in a high risk profession, such as a doctor, would perhaps need to do different planning because the chances of getting sued might be much higher than for somebody else who was a manager at a department store or something of that nature.

Estate Planning Does Not Have To Be Expensive If Done On Time And In The Right Way

It would be quite straightforward and would not be very expensive if someone was just starting out or if they did not have a lot of assets. It can be expensive, however, depending on the person’s assets and what they actually wanted to do with them.

For more information on Setting Up An Estate Plan, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you’re seeking by calling [number type=”1″] today.