Estate planning isn’t something reserved for the wealthy. Even if you don’t have an expensive property, sizable IRA, or priceless artwork to leave behind, the handling of your affairs after your passing could have a lasting and expensive effect on your loved ones — if they don’t have a plan in place. Everyone can benefit from having an estate plan, regardless of age or financial situation, provided they have assets to leave behind and beneficiaries to whom they should go.
If you’re planning your retirement in LA, you may want to work on your estate plan. Your estate plan can be completed alongside your retirement plan while you have all of your financial documents in front of you. LA estate planning doesn’t have to be complicated. Read on to learn more about the process and what you can do to get a headstart.
What is Estate Planning?
Your estate essentially consists of everything you own, including any real estate you own, your car, your bank accounts, your investments, your life insurance, your furniture, and your personal belongings.
An estate plan gives you control over how those goods are donated to people or to causes you care about. It organizes your affairs and records your wishes and aspirations in writing. It specifies how you intend to divide up your possessions, money, and other financial resources.
State law and the probate courts will decide these matters for you after your passing if you don’t make these choices and designations while you’re still alive and competent. The outcomes they decide on may not be in line with your preferences or your family’s needs.
Basics of Estate Planning
Decide who needs your support and how you want to safeguard them before starting on your planning. Then, when making an estate plan, three things should be taken into account: how you want your assets to be distributed after your passing, whether you want your heirs to pay a lot of taxes on their inheritance, and who you want to handle your business in the event that you become incapable of managing it while you’re still alive.
Most estate plans include:
- A will
- An assignment of power of attorney
- A healthcare proxy
- A trust (in some cases)
A will, usually referred to as a last will and testament, is a formal document that guarantees your wishes regarding your property will be carried out in the case of your demise. Be aware that the state court determines who among your surviving relatives will receive what if you pass away intestate — without creating a will. It’s doubtful that your desires will be carried out even if you made them known while you were still alive unless you put them in a will that is legally binding. In terms of child custody disputes and the division of assets, not taking care of this can have very nasty results.
On the other hand, trusts can be used to leave property, including money, to heirs. Wills are frequently more complex than trusts. They do not need to be handled in court, which saves a lot of money and time. Furthermore, they are spared from paying some of the significant taxes that may be assessed in connection with an inheritance.
Benefits of estate planning also includes:
- Well-managed finances
- Protection against incapacity
- Secured business regardless of retirement or death
- Family finances remain private
- Protection of beneficiaries interests
In LA, estate planning can be a complex and tedious process. As such, it usually involves an estate planning lawyer in LA. It’s much easier when you are working with an attorney who understands the issues you are facing and can help guide you through the process of preparing a will and other forms of estate planning.
Hire An Estate Planning Lawyer
If your legal concerns involve estate planning or probate administration, our estate planning attorneys in Los Angeles can help. Consider reaching out to the Law Offices of R. Grace Rodriguez for all of your estate planning needs. We are a local probate and estate firm that is happy to work with you to ensure that you and your loved ones are adequately prepared for the future.
At the Law Offices of R. Grace Rodriguez, we will work with you to determine your options and advocate on your behalf for the best possible solution. Headed by an experienced estate planning attorney, we cater to nearby cities in the Los Angeles area and have helped dozens of clients who have faced estate planning troubles. Our services are comprehensive, efficient, and effective.
No matter what your estate planning or probate matters entail, we are here to guide you through the legal process in the Los Angeles metropolitan area and Southern California. Contact us at 818-734-7223 or send a message online using the form on this website. Initial consultations are free.