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What is Estate Planning?
As you prepare to make sure your loved ones are cared for when you are no longer there to care for them, it is important to consider developing a comprehensive estate plan that is tailored to the unique aspects of your situation. While you may be familiar with wills and how they ensure your property is divided according to your wishes, it is important to make yourself familiar with trusts and how they can protect your property from public scrutiny, probate and taxes.
A trust is a legal entity designed to hold and invest property for the benefit of another. Trusts may be established during your lifetime or after your death as outlined in your will. Some trusts allow you to remain in complete control of your property while others limit your control.
Types of trusts include:
A competent estate planning lawyer should be able to help you understand the differences between the various types of trusts available to you, make you aware of the tax consequences of each and assist you in selecting the appropriate vehicle to maximize your estate goals.
If you own property, if your marital status has changed, if you have children or if you wish to leave an inheritance to a friend or relative it is important to seek the advice of an estate planning lawyer. An experienced attorney can help you understand all the options you have available to you in the estate planning process and help you develop the best plan for your situation and goals (Contact an Estate Planning Attorney in your state).
Estate Planning Articles
- Ten Things to Know About Estate Planning Everyone knows they should, but no one ever wants to do estate planning. Who wants to think about your ultimate demise?
- What is a Living Will? A living will is a legal document that a person uses to make known his or her wishes regarding life prolonging medical treatments.
- Wills: Why You Need One Many people wonder if they really need a will.
- Estate Planning Attorneys Take care of your estate planning needs with a qualified local attorney.
- Updating Your Estate Plan It's a good idea to update your estate plan every few years or after the occurrence of significant life events.
- More Estate Planning Articles
Estate Planning Forms
- Last Will & Testament
- Power of Attorney
- Revocable Living Trust
- Very Simple Will
- More Estate Planning Forms
Estate Planning Links
- Wills and Trusts Find a lawyer to plan and draft wills and trusts, or handle disputes arising out of inheritance or probate issues.
- ABA's Section of Real Property, Probate and Trust Law Section news, publications, membership information.
- American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys A membership organization of estate planning attorneys from across the nation.
- Coalition on Donation Includes information on organ and tissue donation.