Now that you know what an estate is and what your assets are, what is an estate plan? What does it include and what does it prepare you for? Here’s what you need to know:
A comprehensive estate plan generally includes the following documents:
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- Living Trust
- Will/Pour-Over Will
- Durable Power of Attorney
- Medical Directive/Living Will
- Community Property Agreement (for married couples only)
These documents work together to plan ahead for incapacitation or death. You select your “agent,” “trustee” and “executor”—that is, the person who will make decisions for your finances and healthcare in the event you are unable to care for yourself, as well as the person who will administer your estate after your death.
If you have minor children, you will nominate a “guardian” for them. Without a nominated guardian, upon your incapacitation or death, a court will select the guardian of your minor child.
An estate plan relieves your family of the time and cost of probate court, as well as the strain of having to make critical decisions for an ailing family member. During crisis, the peace of mind and ease of having your estate plan in order is priceless.
A comprehensive estate plan will also minimize expenses at death and reduce or avoid taxes. It allows you to leave your family your legacy—your way.
Disclaimer: The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. Brittany Britton is licensed to practice law in the state of California only.