Whether you are just starting out or are approaching retirement, it’s neither too soon nor too late to think about estate planning. Though some people think that estate planning is only for the wealthy, no matter how much you have in the bank it is important to make plans for how you want your assets distributed. Doing so provides your family and loved ones with the peace of mind of knowing that everything is being done as you wish, and also will have the benefit of being protected against federal and state estate taxes. When you’re looking for experienced and knowledgeable help in setting up an estate plan, call the attorneys at Cohen Fineman LLC. We can help you understand the best practices for managing your estate in South Jersey.
There are many steps to establishing an estate plan that will meet your needs. Though everybody’s long term goals and wishes are different, there are certain issues and documents that every estate plan should address. These include:
- Making sure that your assets are distributed in a way that minimizes that amount of taxes that need to be paid by your beneficiaries and loved ones
- Making sure that you have a will that is current, and which provides very clear instructions as to how you want your assets dispersed and to whom
- Making sure that you have provided for the support and financial wellbeing of any young children, grandchildren, or other dependents that you may have
- Establish a living trust through which your estate can bypass probate
- Assign a power of attorney to allows someone to handle things for you if you can’t act on your own behalf. There are two types of power of attorney: financial power of attorney, which assigns responsibility for writing checks and handling economic issues, and medical power of attorney, which assigns responsibility for making medical decisions
- Set up an advance directive or living will that spells out your end-of-life preferences
- Make sure that you have sufficient life insurance to take care of burial costs and to cover your children’s financial needs
Once you have addressed all of these issues and set up an estate, most of the hard work is done. Following this, it is a very good idea to meet with your estate planning attorney on a regular basis or whenever something significant happens in your life. Examples of significant events include the births of children, divorce, deaths of people who are included as beneficiaries of your will or life insurance, and more. It is important that all of your documents are updated in order to make sure that your wishes are clearly understood and carried out.
The attorneys at Cohen Fineman LLC are experienced estate planning lawyers in South Jersey who can help you to organize and address all of your wishes and put all appropriate plans into place. Call our office today to set up a convenient appointment.
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