Hiring an experienced estate planning attorney to help you with financial and legal services associated with your estate is one of the most important things you can do for yourself and your loved ones to avoid probate. An estate planning lawyer is in charge of making sure your estate planning needs are distributed the way you want them to be after your death. Without estate tax planning and estate planning services, your assets will be distributed according to state law, which may not be in line with your wishes.
This is why it’s so important to have a legal professional serving Los Angeles oversee estate planning documents so family members don’t stress too much when a person dies. Contacting an estate planning lawyer can seem overwhelming, especially if you’re going through it blindly. This is why we’ve put together a guide on estate planning in Los Angeles, CA.
Here’s how estate planning works with an estate planning attorney in Los Angeles, CA and its nearby cities, such as Chatsworth.
How to Plan My Los Angeles, CA Estate
1. Create an InventoryTo get started, your parents will need to take an inventory of all their liquid assets and debts in Los Angeles, CA. This will help them determine what they need to do in order to protect you and your loved ones after they’re gone, and to avoid future probate cases. This is also so you can avoid costly mistakes and make sure that the last will is executed properly, with the property held going to its proper beneficiaries. A thorough inventory is a must-have for any estate planning attorney in Los Angeles looking to build a comprehensive plan for their clients’ estate administration. Each facet of your estate assets corresponds to a certain estate tax, and keeping account of all of it will help avoid the probate process easily. You want to be able to pay your estate taxes accordingly, so don’t forget this step.
2. Assign Beneficiaries in Los Angeles, CAOnce you have taken inventory of your parents’ assets, current law demands that they will need to draft documents that will designate beneficiaries in the Los Angeles area. A beneficiary is a person or organization that you designate to receive a person’s assets after they die. Your parents can choose between a broad range of beneficiaries for each asset, including minor beneficiaries, and they can change the beneficiaries at any time. The estate planning attorney can help with this step after the free consultation period is over.
3.Start PlanningAfter you have taken inventory of your parents’ assets and designated beneficiaries while estate planning, you will need to make arrangements for the distribution of their property according to federal law. The will is an essential part of a comprehensive estate plan and financial planning, as it designates which asset goes to which beneficiary after death. If they do not have a will, their assets will be distributed according to state laws and can go to probate court. They can also create an irrevocable trust or a living trust to manage their assets after they die. A living trust can be used to provide for minor children or disabled adults, to reduce taxes, or control how their assets are used after their death.
4. Assign an Executor
An executor is a trusted individual who is responsible for managing your parents’ estate and ensuring that their final wishes are carried out. The executor will be responsible for overseeing the distribution of their assets, paying any outstanding debts, and filing any necessary tax returns.
Choosing the right executor for your parents’ estate is an important decision, and they should take care to select someone who is reliable and capable of handling this important task. You and your parents may want to consider naming a professional such as a financial planner or an estate planning attorney as their executor. Or perhaps they could name a close friend or family member in Los Angeles, CA. Whoever they end up choosing must be provided with clear instructions. Don’t forget to make sure that they are willing to take on this enormous responsibility.
5.Review it RegularlyAs your parents age, it’s important to keep their estate plan up to date and all legal areas must be covered. Their life circumstances may have changed since they first created their estate plan, and their wishes may have changed as well. By carefully considering these various factors, you and your parents can ensure that their estate is handled in the way that they desire with the right estate planning attorney backing them up. Your parents may have acquired new assets since they first created their estate plan. They may have sold or gifted some assets as well. It’s important to keep track of all of these changes so that their estate plan accurately reflects their current wishes. On top of this, your parents’ health may have changed since they started pursuing Los Angeles estate planning. If they are now suffering from a terminal illness or are otherwise incapacitated, their wishes for their estate may be different than when they were healthy. Speak with your attorney about how to go about their Los Angeles estate planning given this circumstance. An estate planning lawyer in LA can help create plans for their clients that fit unique circumstances. They can also help you navigate the complex Los Angeles legal process and make sure everything is done correctly. Don’t wait until it’s too late. Make sure your parents have estate plans so that you and the rest of your loved ones are taken care of the way they want you to be.
HIRE AN ESTATE PLANNING LAWYER
If you’re in need of an estate planning attorney in Los Angeles, you can also reach out to the Law Offices of R. Grace Rodriguez.
We can help protect your property with full-service real estate representation, specializing in property title challenges, foreclosures, eminent domain, and a variety of claims in the Los Angeles area. Call us now at (818) 734 – 7223 to strategize with an attorney today!