When asked if they are going to disinherit their children, most folks reply, “Of course not.” However, many of them do, unintentionally. The Perils of a Blended Family Unfortunately, the unintentional disinheritance of children happens every day. It usually happens in blended families, which are comprised of second, third, or even forth marriages and children from previous relationships. No matter what promises are made or understandings are had, a spouse that is not the parent of all … [Read more...] about How Not to Unintentionally Disinherit Your Children
Parents of Minor Children
We understand if engaging in the estate planning process seems like a big deal. There are forms to fill out, difficult issues to think about, documents to review, legal fees to be paid, and you have to work with an attorney which may be something you have not previously had to do. None of these things rank highly on anyone’s “My Top 10 Ways to Spend an Afternoon.” But, let us put your mind at ease. Once you enter the estate planning process, you’ll feel a much better. You’ll be able to … [Read more...] about Estate Planning? How do I Start?
While almost anyone can create and use a power of attorney, not everyone needs to grant an agent to handle their affairs. However, you can always create a power of attorney that will take effect in the event it is needed. If you are a person in any of the following categories, you should talk to your estate planning attorney to create a power of attorney. Seniors. Aging often requires us to give others the ability to help us manage your affairs. Your estate plan should includedifferent … [Read more...] about Who Needs A Power of Attorney?
We are often asked by prospective clients: “Do I need an estate plan?” This is particularly the case for folks under 40 or 50, who just can’t imagine themselves dead or incapacitated. We are also often asked about planning by our clients who have adult children with assets and children of their own. As we all know, we can't and don’t know the future. Should a premature death or disability occur due to an unexpected injury or illness, having an appropriate plan in place will reduce needless … [Read more...] about Do I Need an Estate Plan? I’m Not That Old
We have previously wrote about the long-awaited arrival in California of the so-called ABLE accounts. Formally, known as an Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) account, they are a low-cost, easy-to-access plan established by federal law that began rolling out in 2016 and is now available in California. Modeled after the so-called “529 accounts”, an educational savings program offered by individual states, ABLE accounts let children or adults with disabilities incurred before age 26 … [Read more...] about An Update On ABLE Accounts
As you go through life, you need to make sure that you have a valid and comprehensive estate plan in place. An estate plan will allow you to live your life with less stress, and can ensure that your affairs are in order, no matter what. Take a look at the 5 questions below to ask yourself about your estate plan. Do you have a will or trust in place? If you’re just beginning your planning, you may not have a will or trust. These are fundamental planning tools. You can appoint a … [Read more...] about 5 Questions to Ask Yourself about Your Estate Plan
Each day, many parents with young children put off the important task of planning for the future. It can be easy to become busy with life’s everyday events. If you are a parent, you need to take the time to create an estate plan. This will allow you to make sure that your children are protected in the future. Are you unsure about the need for an estate plan? If so, consider the following questions: What will happen if you become disabled or die tomorrow? Who will care for your … [Read more...] about All Parents Should Have an Estate Plan
Part of the task of estate planning or updating an estate plan is to select trusted persons or entities to fill the positions of trustees, guardians, power of attorney agents, health care agents and executors. In order to make good decisions, you need to know the ideal characteristics of each role. Trustee of trust for minors. The trustee of the trust for your minor children or grandchildren will likely be the same as your settlement trustee. If you have the children joining as a … [Read more...] about How to Choose Trustees, Guardians and Agents
Choosing a guardian for your children is uncomfortable, but it’s better than the alternatives and it’s part of the Estate Planning process. What if Your Child’s Guardians Gets Divorced? You can indicate in your Will who you want to serve as your child’s guardian and include who shall continue to serve as guardian, if a couple named as guardians gets divorced. Characteristics of a Good Guardian No one will raise your children exactly as you would, but if you choose the right guardians … [Read more...] about How to Choose Your Child’s Guardian (Part 2 of 2)
If you don’t nominate your child’s guardian and a tragedy strikes your family, the court will and it may not be whom you would choose. In fact, it may be your alcoholic brother, Mike, crazy Aunt Mable, or the foster care system. Choosing a guardian for your children is uncomfortable, but it’s better than the alternatives and part of the Estate Planning process. Where You Appoint a Guardian You nominate a guardian for your minor children in your Will. That is true even if you have an … [Read more...] about How to Choose Your Child’s Guardian (Part 1 of 2)