What Type Of Estate Planning Services Do You Offer To Potential Clients?
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I mainly do simple wills. The way the tax laws are structured, you don’t really have to do these complex tax-saving wills unless your estate exceeds anywhere from $2 million to $5 million. So, you can do a fairly simple will, which just means that if there are a husband and wife, then the estate goes to the wife if the husband dies, or it goes to the husband if the wife dies. Once they’re both gone, they will typically split everything equally amongst the children. You don’t have to do your will that way, but that’s typically what happens. You have to name somebody to be the executor and the executor has a limited role. They basically collect up the assets, pay the bills, and then make the distributions in accordance with the will. You also have to name a trustee in the event any assets go to minors. The trustee is responsible for the money up to a certain age. Usually its age 25 these days, 21 seems to be too young. The trustee has sole discretion to spend the money on education, support, and maintenance, but they have pretty broad leeway.
What Other Documents Are Important In An Effective Estate Plan?
You need to have a power of attorney. A power of attorney permits someone else to handle your assets in the event that you are either unable to handle your assets or you want somebody to assist you in handling your assets. Usually, you name one person and then you name also an alternate.
The last document you need is called a Living Will. The main purpose of the living will be to appoint someone to be your health care representative. Without a living will, your spouse can make these decisions but if the spouse isn’t available, you can name another person to do it such as a brother or a sister or one of your children. You can also outline under certain circumstances whether you want to have a feeding tube put in or if you want them to try experimental procedures on you.
It’s usually a question balancing costs and benefits, for instance, if it’s costing a lot of money and you’re not really getting anywhere or you are just going to be in a vegetative state. You indicate under what circumstances you want them not to take any extraordinary steps to keep you alive.
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