When news outlets first published the details of David Bowie’s estate plan, it surprised many people that a man who was almost bankrupt in the 1970s left $135 million to his family and several close acquaintances. Not only is this an example of how careful planning and a few great business deals can reverse financial fortune, this story also demonstrates why an estate plan is important.
Estate planning can be an uncomfortable reminder of mortality, but it is a necessary milestone that all competent adults must complete in order to preserve their hard-earned assets and property for future generations. The following are our top seven tips for anyone considering implementing an estate plan or making changes to an existing portfolio.
Tip 1: Jump right in
As mentioned above, estate planning can be uncomfortable, and there will definitely be discussions concerning end-of-life decisions, dividing property among children, and pre-planning for mental incompetency. However, putting it off any longer will not do you or your children any good in the long run.
If you are nervous about the process, rest assured a competent estate planning attorney will be able to help ease you through the conversation and will have the final documents ready for execution in a matter of weeks.
With the dawning of do-it-yourself estate planning and online services, myths and misunderstandings abound. While these services can be helpful in some limited scenarios, it takes a truly knowledgeable estate planning attorney to separate fact from fiction.
As you review the top five estate planning myths described below, consider whether you have fallen prey to some of these misguided notions, and be sure to contact Lovett & House Co., LPA for estate planning help today.
Myth 1: Estate planning is one-size-fits-all
One of the most frustrating aspects of DIY estate planning techniques is the notion that all plans—and clients—are the same. By contrast, each individual and family requires a custom-drafted estate plan to meet the individual needs and wishes of that particular individual. While some estate plans are relatively simple and straightforward, others are not (by a long shot).
As you consider your estate plan, remember that what may seem like a simple idea at first may develop into a much more complex matter later, and well-drafted documents are an essential component in avoiding hassle and conflict down the road.
Very few people like to think about their death; however, it is something we all must think about and plan for if we want to protect our assets and provide for our families. The estate planning attorneys of Lovett & House Co., LPA want to help you avoid these common estate planning mistakes by offering you sound, competent estate planning advice right now. Contact our office if you have questions about estates or if you want to begin the estate planning process.
When the time comes for you or a family member to move into a facility because you require assistance with your personal care and/or medical care, making the decision between an Ohio nursing home and an Ohio assisted living facility can be difficult. A nursing home and an assisted living facility both have pros and cons. Sometimes, the pros and cons of each choice depend on the unique facts and circumstances of your situation.
Our Ohio nursing home attorneys can help you and your family as you try to decide between a nursing home and an assisted living facility by reviewing the pros and cons of each type of facility. We can also help you plan for the eventual move to a nursing home or assisted living facility to protect your assets and take advantage of the benefits provided by Medicaid.
If you believe trust agreements are only used by individuals who are wealthy, you are mistaken. Trust agreements are flexible estate planning tools that offer several advantages to a wide variety of individuals during their lifetime and after their death.
A trust agreement can be used to place conditions on how assets are distributed from the trust; avoid or reduce estate and gift taxes; shelter assets from creditors and lawsuits; protect vulnerable beneficiaries who receive governmental benefits or suffer from a gambling, drinking, drug abuse, or mental health issue; avoid the probate process; and provide income for your loved ones.
Depending on what you want to accomplish, you can choose from several different types of trust agreements. Each type has advantages and disadvantages that you must consider. Our estate planning attorneys can advise you on which type of trust agreement you should use based on your objectives and goals. Below are five of the most common types of trust agreements used by individuals in Ohio.