Worcester estate planning lawyers help you with the creation of an estate plan that provides for your loved ones and gives you control over what will happen to your money and property. Everyone should have an estate plan in place so default laws don’t determine what happens to their wealth and so they can ensure they don’t lose a substantial portion of their money or property to estate tax.
Once you have made an initial estate plan, you should also make sure that you keep your plans updated so they are a reflection of your current family and financial situation. The Law Offices of James A. Miller, P.C. can help. We can provide personalized advice on what estate planning tools you should be using and can help you to create a comprehensive plan that addresses all of your most important goals.
Checking in periodically with your estate planning lawyer is important because laws can change and your personal situation can change, so you want to make sure that your current plan that you have in place still makes sense for you.
While you should review your plan at least once a year, there are also specific life events that could occur which should prompt you to seek estate planning help right away. In fact, there are five key life situations that should prompt you to talk with an experienced attorney either to make a plan for the first time if you don’t already have one or to update the existing plan that you have so it can account for the major life milestone that you have experienced.
When you get married, you have a spouse counting on your income and/or on the valuable services you provide, like caring for children. You need to make sure you have taken steps to protect your spouse in case of your incapacity or death.
Getting a Divorce
If you end your marriage, you want to make certain that you update all of your estate planning documents including your last will and testament, your beneficiaries on all life insurance policies, and any advanced directives for healthcare that you have in place.
Having a Child or Adopting a Child
When you have a child or when you adopt a child, you need to make certain you have named a guardian for the child so you have control over who will raise the child if something happens to both parents before the child reaches adulthood. You also need to make plans for what will happen to a child’s inheritance if you pass away before the child is 18.
You likely want to provide financially for your child, but your son or daughter cannot directly inherit until he or she is 18 – and you may not want him to receive his entire inheritance without any strings attached on his 18th birthday. Tools like trusts can help you to take control over who manages the assets you leave to the child and when the child actually takes control of the money and property you have left behind.
Buying or Selling Assets of Significant Value
When you purchase valuable assets or sell valuable assets that you previously owned, you will need to adjust your last will and testament or other estate planning tools that you have used (such as trusts). You may need to modify your estate plan in order to ensure that you are leaving an appropriate inheritance for all of your loved ones and to ensure you have specified your preferences for who will inherit each of the assets that you own.
Diagnosis with a Serious Illness
If you have been diagnosed with a serious illness, it is important to put advanced directives for healthcare in place, if you do not already have advanced directives like a living will and a healthcare power of attorney. You should also think seriously about how you can protect your assets while qualifying for Medicaid in case you need Medicaid to pay for nursing home care. There may also be other important issues to address after a diagnosis of a serious illness, including ensuring that your legacy planning is in order in case your illness results in your passing.
Getting Help from Worcester Estate Planning Lawyers
Worcester estate planning lawyers at The Law Offices of James A. Miller, P.C. can help you in these situations and whenever you need to update your estate plan. To find out about the services that our legal team can offer to you in making an initial estate plan and in keeping your plans updated, join us for a free seminar. You can also give us a call at 866-370-3888 or contact us online to get personalized help with all of your estate planning needs. Call today to get started.
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