Estate Planning: How to Protect Your Assets

The death of a close friend, parent, sibling, or elderly relative is one of the most difficult and draining events a family can go through. Because you are not allowed to participate in these discussions, it can be difficult to decide what your final wishes are for your family. A probate attorney can help you plan your estate so that your wishes are respected and your surviving family members are protected.

A probate lawyer, or estate attorney, is a qualified and experienced law professional who has a thorough knowledge of the federal and state regulations that impact your estate. An estate planning attorney can help you prepare your will, set up a trust, and ensure that your beneficiaries receive their inheritances as per your will. They also provide protection for your heirs should you die or become disabled. They will work closely with your tax professional in order to ensure that you pay the correct inheritance taxes. They may also be required to make decisions regarding the distribution of your assets and give legal advice to family members and friends who might need it.

While estate planning is intended to protect your financial assets after your death, some people do it because they have social obligations. For example, a spouse or a child. A financial planner can help you draft a plan that meets all the requirements of federal and state statutes. You should know that you may need to pay legal consultation fees if you hire a planning attorney or attorney to assist you with your estate planning. These fees can vary depending on your specific situation and range from a few hundred to thousands.

Many people don’t realize that inheritance taxes are part of the estate planning fees. The tax-free allowance is the amount your family receives after your death. Lawyers can also provide information about estate planning. They can help you understand the requirements before you can make your will. An estate planner can review your insurance policies, retirement plans, asset protection strategies, and other financial information. They can help you negotiate with banks, creditors, and insurance companies on your behalf in order to settle any claims against you or settle outstanding debts.

A simple trust is another option for planning your estate. You can set rules for how your assets are distributed, such as who may have access to them and how they should be used. If you have any accounts, you can decide who will make the payments. Even if your estate planning decisions are made using a trust you might need to file an estate tax return in order to report the sale of assets or transfer to beneficiaries.

You should consult with someone qualified before making any estate planning decisions. This includes a friend, lawyer, or accountant. You should appoint someone to provide health care for you if you become incapacitated. This is called a health proxy. The person you appoint should be familiar with all aspects of incapacitation law and qualified to provide personal advice. A living will is a document that clearly states your wishes regarding the disposition of your assets in case you are unable to speak for yourself.

This article was written by Alla Tenina. Alla is a top estate planning attorney in Sherman Oaks, CA in Los Angeles California, and the founder of Tenina law. She has experience in bankruptcies, real estate planning, and complex tax matters. The information provided on this website does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice; instead, all information, content, and materials available on this site are for general informational purposes only. Information on this website may not constitute the most up-to-date legal or other information. This website contains links to other third-party websites. Such links are only for the convenience of the reader, user or browser; the ABA and its members do not recommend or endorse the contents of the third-party sites.