The Basic Estate Plan

“No, I don’t need an estate plan, just a simple will….”

Oh really!?

I hear this a lot.  People think an “estate plan” is only for the rich people or an estate plan is going to cost too much.  Even the most basic documents, like a SIMPLE WILL, is part of an ESTATE PLAN. For that matter having no documents is part of an estate plan… one decided by the California legislature!

While it’s true that many clients do not need a living trust that does not mean they should use a computer program, paralegal or general practice lawyer to do their estate plan.  The ways to mess up an estate plan are many and the costs are huge.  The costs are not only monetary but emotional.

Talk to a licensed and experienced California CERTIFIED SPECIALIST IN ESTATE PLANNING, TRUST AND PROBATE LAW about your estate plan.  A basic plan should probably include some, or all, of the following:

- Will (with testamentary trust if anybody under 25 or 30 may inherit);

- Power of attorney for financial affairs;

- Power of attorney for medical affairs;

- HIPPA release;

- Nomination of Guardian (can also be in the will);

- Assistance with change of beneficiary forms for life insurance, IRAs, 401ks and other assets with a death beneficiary.

Again, Contact a Professional to get it done right. The costs of doing it wrong are really too great!

-John

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