Estate planning might as well be synonymous with the idea of planning ahead. It is extremely important that people realize that all the hard work, all the struggles, and trials that you’ve invested in and overcome during your life can all disappear in the blink of an eye without a proper network shoring it up; without the proper estate planning model to secure all those dividends you fought tooth and nail for.
A trust, a will, preparing for the inevitable isn’t something we like to think about. Our mortality and that final curtain call is a binding requirement of being alive… we simply can’t escape it. If you look at people who have wealth and have kept that wealth, the key ingredient they all share is the capacity to imagine the unimaginable, to plan for the future.
It doesn’t matter how old you are, how young you are, how financially successful you are, it’s important to sit down with a professional, and get expert advice on this crucial financial necessity. What you’ve built, what you’ve created, your legacy is a fragile thing that might get lost without the proper legal protection; be sure it goes to those you love, those that matter to you.
What is Estate Planning?
In essence, it is the process of anticipation, planning, and coordinating the distribution and protection of your assets after your death or incapacitation. It is a method by which an individual outlines a program for their fortune while minimizing such time consuming and costly practices like generation-skipping transfers, estate gifts, and income taxes.
The normal goal of estate planning is to reduce the administrative uncertainties and to maximize the value of an estate by reducing taxes and other expenses. Nonetheless, estate planning is a complex issue and legal battlefield where the specific goal of a client’s will can be as elaborate or simple as their desire dictates.
Estate planning may overlap into other fields and has a myriad of provisions such as long-term care and designating guardians and beneficiaries.
It is a legal device that involves wills, trust, designations, powers of appointment, joint tenancy, power of attorney, and dozens of other judicial tools meant to protect a person’s finances in the case of a disaster or death. It is a sophisticated and often overlooked branch of law but one that is vital.
The importance of Estate Planning
Everyone, despite their family dynamics or economic status, can profit from having a professional estate plan. Nonetheless, most people have disregarded to put such programs in place. A recent survey from Caring.com reported that only 42% of American adults currently have estate planning documents, such as a will or living trust.
If you haven’t yet incorporated a plan, weigh the following reasons why you should speak to an attorney or advisor about your wishes.
To Plan for Your Own Needs
Most people think of estate planning as something they will only need once they die, what they don’t realize is that the device can also protect their assets in the event they become incapacitated. Estate planning takes into account your cash flow and its distribution up to and beyond retirement. Additionally, it considers the matter of healthcare proxies and power of attorney in the case of a tragedy.
Distribute your wealth how you wish
Without proper documentation, it is the government/state you reside in that typically decodes how your assets will be distributed once you die. Precise documentation can save your family members’ time and will guarantee that your assets are separated in the way you intend.
Estate planning also prepares future generations for the wealth they might receive. It ensures they receive these assets when you consider they might be ready and you can even attach clauses to your will and decide how they should spend the gift.
To Minimize Taxes
If you or your family has gained an abundant amount of wealth, then an estate planning process can help you skip certain expenses and strategically move your wealth around in the most tax-efficient way possible.
Protect Your Wealth
Your assets can be disputed in many ways during your lifetime and after it. Lawsuits, claims, and dozens of other legal recourse can be used by others to attack your earnings. Estate planning can help you protect your wealth and preserve it by fortifying it against such incursions.
Estate planning can be a complex and emotional process, that’s why it is critical to not only start early but to seek advice and legal representation from a professional. Attorneys can help guide you during this process and also provide you with expert aid in making life-changing decisions.
For assistance planning your living trust and estate planning, please contact Carlos Gonzalez Law (786) 358-6888