Why Your Probate Lawyer Works in Your Best Interest
Your probate lawyer understands that when you die, you have no more power over your belongings. Lacking a plan, however, can result in your things going to no one you expected. Even worse, imagine what it would be like to have your entire estate fall into the hands of debt collectors. What happens to your estate is ultimately up to you. By doing nothing now, you ensure that even your personal wishes will mean nothing. Speaking with a probate lawyer can remedy all of the insecurities behind your death. Your family and close ones will appreciate that.
What Is Estate Planning Exactly?
Estate planning shouldn’t be perceived as solely a thing you do to prepare for death. Your estate exists right now, and its current possessions are taxable. With an estate plan, you earn the legal privilege of hedging your possessions against financial risks. You and others have the right to do this because estate planning calls for you to decide who your beneficiaries are. These are those who’ll receive your estate after your death. Purposing your assets in a way for beneficiaries to acquire them causes the public courts to temporarily lift taxation or debt.
Simple Steps to Start Your Estate Planning With a Probate Lawyer
Estate planning also takes into account the quality of your current life. Attorneys should be questioned so that you establish a stronger legal foundation. Otherwise, you can begin estate planning with the help of any professional. To do so, however, you don’t need to start off with any valuable assets. If you own only a single bed, then you own enough to create an estate plan with. Making the most of the legal tools you have, however, should encourage you to:
• Create a Financial Portfolio: Your financial portfolio contains all of the assets, be they financial or not, that you own. Income, savings and even your pet goat are legal assets.
• Speak With an Advisor: A financial advisor has the legal responsibility of a fiduciary. This is someone who’s bound by law and oath to ensure that your money is well handled.
• Contact a Lawyer: Lawyers work in specific fields, and this means that you can find one working in estate planning specifically. These professionals know the way courts work and what your beneficiaries are likely to do after you die.
• Notarize the Documents: Your final step isn’t necessarily the last, for your plan can be updated and improved indefinitely. However, the things you do agree on must be documented.
Your Legal Authority to Bequest an Estate
It’s important to plan right now because you have the right to bequest your estate. You have the right to dictate every stage of your estate’s transfer in fact. For these reasons, the courts offer a variety of tools to plan your estate with. Your property doesn’t have to be left in the hands of a judge’s discretion. You have family and friends who’ll be disappointed to know that you failed to consider them. Leaving something as simple as a picture to an old friend can do wonders. A will and a power of attorney can also build the right legal basis for your estate’s transfer.
What Is a Last Will and Testament?
A probate lawyer can’t decide on who gets your assets, but they can help you to write up a legal document that does. A testamentary will tells the public courts the wishes you have and to whom your belongings will go to. Without a document like that, courts have to make a “blind” decision regarding how your estate is disbursed. In your will, you can organize all of your assets to coincide with all of your current beneficiaries. Those you list to receive your assets, however, don’t have to be family or friends. You can assign your possessions to complete strangers.
What Is a Power of Attorney?
A power of attorney (POA) is a legal contract that gives someone, though in limiting ways, your authority. You might own a business, have homes across seas and have children living internationally. A true power of attorney allows someone else to legally act on your behalf in such cases. That person is called the agent while the one creating the POA, being you, is called the grantor. Powers of attorney need to be strategic if you want successful results. Managing your assets could be difficult if your absence somewhere can’t be filled by a substitute.
The Major Difference
Estate planning calls for strategic thinking and for you to use all of the available tools you have. For this reason, you need to account for the events of your death and any tragedies to come about during your life. A last will is activated after you die. A power of attorney, however, is notarized while you’re still alive and used for living purposes. Essentially, the agent who receives your authority only acts on your behalf while you’re alive but incapable. Both are legal to have together, but POAs account for your life while a will accounts for your death.
Do You Get to Choose Your Power of Attorney?
Your power of attorney can only be legally notarized if and when you are in a healthy mental state. No one except the person you choose can act on your behalf or legally gain your POA. Attorneys do act within the role of a POA’s agent, but you can choose your agent based on other skills and competencies. Allowing a business partner, for example, to act on your behalf might be beneficial when they possess the qualifications. You should consider interviewing this person. You can then write up the specific role they will later on have.
Your Estate Plan Is Permanent Once You Die
There is no turning back the hands of time. Once you die, your plan or lack therefore goes into effect and will thrive or fail. You’re doomed to failure if you ignore planning now. Just imagine now what it’s like when children and other family members fight over your things. Consider how it is when no one receives a clear understanding of what they meant to you. Leaving behind specific guidelines to follow after your death isn’t terribly difficult. Start with speaking with a professional about your options. Your specific estate dictates the exact plan you’ll need.