Worcester estate planning lawyers help you to avoid big mistakes that you could make in the process of making plans for your legacy. Many people do not fully understand how to make an effective estate plan that accomplishes all of the goals that they have for their wealth and for providing security for their family. If you don’t get the proper legal help and try to handle estate planning on your own, you could end up costing your own financial security and becoming unable to provide for loved ones the way you had hoped.
The Law Offices of James A. Miller, P.C. will work closely with you to make an appropriate estate plan based on your personal family situation, the assets you own, and the other factors that could impact your planning process. Call our Worcester estate planning lawyers today to learn about five big mistakes that our legal team could help you to avoid, including the following five errors that could hurt your legacy.
Waiting too Long to Make an Estate Plan
You may believe you don’t need a plan if you’re young or that you will have plenty of time to make a plan if you are healthy. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case because unexpected tragedy could strike at any time. You want to put a plan in place now and you can update it as your life changes. If you wait, it could be too late and default laws could apply to determine what happens to your wealth and family.
Using the Wrong Estate Planning Tools
Simply creating a last will and testament is often not enough for most people, although it is a common misconception that making a will is all that you need to do. A last will and testament can allow you to determine who will inherit assets, but you cannot protect the inheritance you provide and you have no control over how an inheritance is used. There is also a risk that someone could contest your will and your wishes wouldn’t end up being respected. There could be other tools you could use that provide more protection for assets, a timelier and less expensive transfer of assets, and other benefits.
Failing to Understand Estate Tax
Estate tax can be charged on larger estates and, when it is due, it must be paid by the estate. Many people try to avoid estate tax by transferring assets outside of the probate process, but depending upon which legal tool you use, this may not be effective. You need to work with Worcester estate planning lawyers if you are going to owe state and/or federal estate tax so you can do all you can to reduce the tax burden your estate could face.
Not Taking the Special Needs of Heirs Into Account
Heirs or beneficiaries may have unique issues that make it impossible for them to directly inherit or manage money or that make it impractical for them to manage an inheritance. For example, if you have a disabled loved one you wish to leave money to, you could cause a loss of access to means-tested benefits if you make a plan to give them money or property and do not use a special needs trust or otherwise make plans to protect their access to Medicaid coverage. You should also make a special plan to leave money to minors under 18 who cannot inherit directly; spendthrift heirs who may not be trusted to manage an inheritance; and other heirs or beneficiaries who have unique needs.
Failing to Protect Your Assets
Your wealth could be at risk from many possible sources of loss, including high nursing home care bills. There are tools you can use to keep wealth safe during and after your lifetime but you may not be aware of the risks to your assets or know how to effectively use these legal tools if you do not work with an experienced attorney who can help.
Getting Help from Worcester Estate Planning Lawyers
Worcester estate planning lawyers can help you to make an appropriate estate plan that uses the legal tools most likely to be effective at protecting your assets and family. If you are ready to find out how The Law Offices of James A. Miller, P.C. can help you to make a plan that allows you to leave a desired legacy, join us for a free seminar. You can also give us a call at 866-370-3888 or contact us online to get personalized one-on-one advice about all of your estate planning needs.
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