About 68% of Americans don’t have a will. With the threat of the coronavirus on everyone’s mind, people are in urgent need of an estate plan. To make sure your plan is proper and legal, consult an experienced estate planning attorney. Work with a lawyer who understands your needs, has years of experience and knows the law in your state.
EconoTimes’ recent article entitled “Top 3 Estate Planning Tips When Seeing An Attorney” provides several tips for estate planning when seeing an attorney.
Attorney Experience. An estate planning attorney will have the experience and specialized knowledge to help you, compared to a general practitioner. Look for an attorney who specializes in estate planning.
Inventory. List everything you have. Once you start the list, you may be surprised with the tangible and intangible assets you possess.
Tangible assets may include:
- Cars and boats
- Homes, land, and other real estate
- Collectibles like art, coins, or antiques; and
- Other personal possessions.
Your intangible assets may include:
- Mutual funds, bonds, stocks
- Savings accounts and certificates of deposit
- Retirement plans
- Health saving accounts; and
- Business ownership.
Create Your Estate Planning Documents. Prior to seeing an experienced estate planning attorney, he or she will have you fill out a questionnaire and to bring a list of documents to the appointment. In every estate plan, the core documents often include a creating a last will and powers of attorney, as well as coordinating your Beneficiary Designations on life insurance and investment accounts. You may also want to ask about a trust and if you have minor children selecting a guardian for their care if you should pass away. You should also ask about estate taxes with the attorney.
Reference: EconoTimes (July 30, 2020) “Top 3 Estate Planning Tips When Seeing An Attorney”