An estate plan might be thought of as signing a Last Will and Testament. However, estate planning is not limited to directing what will happen to your property after your death.
Estate planning can also be a means for you to direct 1) what will happen if you become unable to make decisions during your life; 2) your wishes for your medical care during a final incurable illness; and 3) what will happen to your body and your property after your death. An estate plan can include aspects of Medicaid planning, as discussed more fully in our “Elder Law” section.
When you meet with one of our attorneys to discuss your estate plan, we will ask you to tell us about your family, your goals, and the things that are important to you. We will help you understand how you can achieve your goals and will craft a plan that best suits your unique situation.
Even if you are young or do not consider yourself to be wealthy, estate planning can be helpful for you and your family. The best time for estate planning is before a crisis occurs. Also, certain estate planning tools – including certain tools used to minimize the effects of estate tax and used to minimize costs of nursing home care – can be most effective the earlier they are put into place.
Estate planning issues include:
- Who will make your medical decisions if you become unable to do so?
- Who will manage your financial business if you become unable to do so?
- What types of end-of-life care might you want?
- If you have minor children, who will care for your children after your death?
- Who will receive your property after your death?
- Should your property be held in trust for your loved ones?
- Can you make gifts of property during your lifetime?
- How can you minimize costs of nursing home care?
- How can you minimize the effects of estate tax?
Because estate planning can include a wide-variety of practice areas – including business law and real estate law – and can involve input from other professionals such as tax advisors, it is important that you trust your estate planning to a firm that is involved in many different areas of law.
Attorneys at The Rowe Law Firm, LLC understand that the death of a loved one is stressful and emotional. Even if your loved one had a well-prepared estate plan, you might need help navigating the issues and planning that arise after death. We strive to reduce your stress and workload so that you can focus on your family during this difficult time.
We will work with you, your family, and your other professional advisors to help ensure that all tasks are completed and other planning is addressed. Those tasks include:
- Probate of a will
- Estate administration
- Trust administration
- Assistance with completing life insurance and other claims forms
- Preparation of documents to transfer property