Working with Estate Attorneys
Planning for Your Future
Estate planning is a process that allows a living person to create a detailed arrangement for the disbursement of his or her estate. The process works to avoid any confusion or uncertainty about how your assets will be administered after your death. A Hingham estate planning attorney can help you create an estate plan that is right for you.
Arranging for Future Life Events
Estate planning can involve much more than simply creating a will. You can make an individualized estate plan based on your unique life situation and what types of life events for which you would like to plan. A Baker Law Group estate planning attorney can help residents in Massachusetts plan for life events such as:
- Physical and legal incapacitation
- Care of Dependants
- Nursing Home Admission and Long-term care
Benefits of Estate Planning
Estate planning is beneficial for both you and your family. By planning ahead for major life events, you can be more certain that your family will be taken care of and that your money and assets will be distributed to the people and entities of your choice. Estate planning can also help you avoid or decrease the estate taxes that could apply to your estate.
Death is always a difficult time for families. Relatives of the deceased may have to plan the funeral and make arrangements to lay their loved one to rest, all while grieving from the loss of their loved one. Dying without a will is called intestacy and can cost one’s family a great deal of time and money. Our estate planning attorneys can help you create an estate plan to eliminate any added stress on your friends and family upon your death.
Estate Planning Tools
There are various devices that can be used to plan an estate:
Last Will and Testament
Wills are legal documents that create an arrangement for the distribution of your property and assets upon your death. A will can contain instructions for things like the disposition of your body after passing, where you would like to be buried, and even who you would like to care for your pet(s). A will can also name a guardian for your minor children. In Massachusetts, anyone over 18-years-old can create a will.
Trusts are arrangements in which you give someone else (a trustee) the right to hold and distribute assets or property for the benefit of a beneficiary. You control the specific details of the trust including how and when the trust will be distributed. Trusts can come into effect during your lifetime, or can be created through your will upon your death. There are many different kinds of trusts. In Massachusetts, the type of trust determines what type of tax applies. Life insurance policies are a very common type of trust. Read more Types of Trusts Explained.
Powers of Attorney
Power of attorney is a document that authorizes someone to act on your behalf for financial matters. The authorization can be permanent or temporary or revocable. In Massachusetts, a durable power of attorney is a similar document to power of attorney for health care or health care proxy that provides instructions for your care if you become sick or incapacitated due to health-related reasons. Read more Durable Powers of Attorney.
Owning a property in joint tenancy with another person allows the property to automatically pass to that person upon your death. Other assets, such as bank accounts and cars, can also be owned in joint tenancy. A will is not needed to transfer a property through joint tenancy.
A prenuptial agreement (often referred to as a “prenup”) is a way to protect your assets if you get divorced. A prenup is a contract between you and your future spouse that is signed before the marriage. The agreements usually include provisions for spousal support and division of assets. Many also include infidelity clauses. If you are already married, postnuptial agreements serve the same purpose as prenups. Read more Premarital Agreements.
Instead of privately drafting a will with your attorney, mediation includes your family in the discussion of your estate plan. It is a great way to avoid surprises in your will that could lead to conflict between your family members after your death. Wills can include a mediation clause, which mandates mediation instead of litigation to solve disputes over your will.
Estate Planning Lawyers Can Help
Life is uncertain and it is important to plan for the future in order to ease the burden on your family and friends when uncertain events occur. Regardless of the size of your estate, an estate planning lawyer will work with you to create the best estate plan for you and your family. Contact Baker Law Group today at 800-701-0352 and let our attorneys assist you in planning for your future.