The term “estate” refers to your net worth — in other words, everything you own. This includes bank accounts, your home, car, investments, life insurance, real estate — all of your personal possessions. The estate property may be in an individual’s name, held in a partnership, a trust, or in a joint ownership arrangement.
Your estate also includes everything that you owe such as your mortgage and other debts that are outstanding at the time of your death. This is referred to as “estate debt”.
Estate planning is probably the most important financial planning you are going to undertake during your lifetime. Most estate plans are established with the help of attorneys that are experienced in estate laws. At Law & Stein, our legal team is very knowledgeable concerning estate planning. We work closely with our clients to develop a plan which will help to minimize the federal and state tax burden placed on their estate while maximizing the assets intended for their beneficiaries.
Some of the tasks involved in estate planning include:
- creating a will or living trust
- naming an executor of the estate
- establishing guardians for dependents, if necessary
- setting up durable power of attorney for financial and medical decisions
- creating a healthcare directive
- naming of beneficiaries on insurance policies
The legal team at Law & Stein will be able to provide you with the guidance necessary with respect to ensuring that all of your documents are properly prepared. They understand the importance of preparing for the future whether it involves drafting a will, establishing a trust, or annual gifting to help reduce your taxable estate.
Our attorneys are very knowledgeable when it comes to federal and state tax laws and can provide you with options so that you can preserve your assets for your heirs and beneficiaries.