Any individual that owns assets (cards, properties, cash, bank accounts, investments) has an estate. When we pass on, our estate does not come with us! Who would you like to receive your assets? A well-constructed estate plan avoids litigation for your family and loved ones when you are not there to speak on your own behalf. A good estate planning attorney will help you share clear instructions on how your property is devised.
How Estate Planning Works
An estate plan is a directive dictation of how one’s financial, legal and certain personal affairs should be handled upon their death or in the event they no longer possess the mental capacity to oversee the responsibility themselves. When properly authored and overseen by professionals like estate planning lawyers, these documents are typically considered legally-binding by most courts and not likely to be challenged by any disputing party.
In many instances, those who author an estate plan do so to ensure a large percentage of their liquid assets are passed to their family members or used to cover themselves in case something threatens their capacity to manage their own affairs. Said actions are often accomplished through the establishment of documentation such as:
Last Will & Testament
This document provides written instruction for how a person’s final responsibilities are to be handled. In this legal instrument, the individual in question will name an executor, who is someone the author trusts and opines as capable of carrying out the associated responsibilities. Once an executor is established, the author then lists their rightful heirs and determines how their assets should be divided. Other pertinent instructions might include burial instructions and how specific debts are to be remitted.
Those who establish living trusts place the entirety of their assets under the management of a trustee, who carries out specific delegation authorities at the time of the author’s passing.
Power of Attorney
Additionally, some people establish a power of attorney decree. In this case, the mandate bestows a designated individual the authority to render important legal or financial decisions on the author’s behalf in the event they become incapable of executing said responsibility.
Health Care Proxy
This legal instrument is somewhat similar to a power of attorney. However, said document gives the individual designated by the author the right to render healthcare decisions on the author’s behalf in the event said individual cannot do so on their own accord.
Turn to Our Estate Planning Attorneys in Los Angeles
Experience and thoroughness are critical qualities for estate planning attorneys to possess. Our lawyers and staff understand the importance of establishing such documentation so that your family is protected and can stay away from litigation. We are committed to helping each individual client tailor estate plans that address their specific circumstances and serve their specific needs.
If you need an estate planning attorney in Los Angeles, please call us at 310.889.0233 so that we can discuss your plan in a free consultation.