No matter your age, it is never too early or too late to have an estate plan. Besides ensuring that the right people inherit your assets, it is also about protecting your future. Estate planning can be confusing, and there are a few things you can and cannot do. Working with an experienced Moorestown NJ estate planning lawyer is probably the best way to ensure that you have a solid estate plan that focuses on contingencies and honors your wishes. In this post, we are discussing the documents that an estate planning lawyer will help with.
- Last Will and Testament: Your Will determines how your estate, including your assets, properties, and possessions, will be divided after your death. It is a common misconception that people who have amassed considerable wealth need to have a will. Even if you own just an apartment, you wouldn’t want your surviving family members to fight over that. Your lawyer can help come up with a will, which can be changed when you want in the future.
- Powers of Attorney: What happens if you become incapacitated and cannot make decisions on your own? You can have Powers of Attorney, which allows you to choose someone to act for you in such times. You can choose to have a Powers of Attorney for medical decisions too. You can also use the tool to determine who makes legal, business, and financial decisions when you cannot do the same.
- Advance Directive: An Advance Directive is intended to express your wishes and to determine who makes major decisions if you are incapable of doing so. This could be related to physical or mental incapacitation. Your health care representative will ensure that the decisions honor your wishes and preferences.
- Living Trust: A Living Trust allows you to place your documents in a trust and choose a trustee. The trustee can be any person of your choice and will remain in control of the assets. You can choose to be the trustee of your own living trust. A Revocable Living Trust has many advantages, but more importantly, it allows the family to avoid the probate process, which is a matter of public record.
If you have never worked with an estate planning lawyer in the past, ensure that you choose one who is known and reliable. It is also a good idea to consider an attorney who works for seniors and specializes in elder law.