Finding the Right Attorney
Thinking about death is hard. But what’s even harder is thinking about what will happen to your children in the event that something happens to you and your spouse. You want to make sure they’re protected no matter what. But leaving your property and other assets to minor children could cause some potential legal problems. Because minor children don’t have any legal rights to those assets without a legal guardian or a trustee, you’re going to need the help of a trusted attorney who can help you navigate the tricky waters of estate planning.
Drafting a Living Will or Trust
Once you’ve found the right estate planning attorney, you’ll most likely start by drafting a will or living trust. A will provides instructions for your assets once you’re gone, but unfortunately doesn’t protect against probate. All of your assets (the ones in your name) have to go through your state’s probate process before your beneficiaries receive anything. You may decide–like many families–that an irrevocable living trust is more appropriate so that you can avoid probate once you’re gone. It can also prevent the courts from taking control of your assets and it provides the most amount of protection. Another benefit? You can include all of your assets on one plan and it can be changed at any time.
Planning Your Estate
Next, your estate planning attorney can help you choose beneficiaries, organize your records, and plan your estate in the best way for you. Make sure that your family knows where to find important paperwork, such as financial records, insurance policies, titles, deeds, and similar paperwork. That information will be contained in your will or living trust. Your attorney can help you find and eradicate any errors in the wording of your living trust to avoid any complications at death. Make sure to keep your information up to date and valid by informing your attorney immediately of any changes to your will or living trust.
Many people think services like these are too expensive, but start with what you can afford because when the well being of your children is at stake, there’s no price too high to ensure they’re protected and well taken care of. Contact us today to see how we can help you properly protect your children and your assets in the event of your death.