Estate planning is an important process and is one in which you don’t want to make any errors. Unfortunately, mistakes can happen- especially if you do not get the right legal assistance. While some errors are more common than others, any mistake could affect the legacy that you wish to leave behind.
The Law Offices of James A. Miller, P.C. can provide clients of all ages with comprehensive help during the estate planning process. We will work to make sure your plan incorporates the right legal tools to achieve your goals.
We’ll also help you to avoid problems with the technical legal aspects of creating an estate plan so you can get the protections that you need. To learn more about how a Worcester estate planning lawyer can help, give us a call today.
Common Estate Planning Mistakes
Some of the many estate planning mistakes people make include:
- Waiting too long to plan: You have to make your estate plan while you are of sound mind. You should not assume you will necessarily be able to keep putting off the planning process until tomorrow, since something unexpected could happen to you at any moment. Make your plan now so you have the peace of mind of knowing it is done and your family is protected.
- Thinking a will is enough. Just making a will is often not going to prove the protections you expect. You need to think about asset protection, end-of-life issues, and trying to effectively facilitate the transfer of assets to new owners in a timely and efficient manner.
- Not choosing the right executor. The executor is the person who oversees the probate process and who manages assets until the new owners officially inherit them. You need to choose someone trustworthy, responsible, and up to the task.
- Failing to address estate tax issues: You could face Massachusetts estate taxes and federal estate taxes if your total taxable estate exceeds a certain value. In Massachusetts, taxes are assessed on estates over $1 million, so you don’t have to have a fortune to be taxed.
- Not taking into account needs of heirs: You may have heirs who are disabled and receiving government benefits. If so, giving a gift of money in your estate planning process could result in the loss of access to important benefits if those benefits are means-tested. You need to structure your gift properly to protect assets. You may also need to take additional steps to protect assets in other situations as well, such as when an heir is irresponsible with money or if you are giving money to someone who is under 18 at the time of your death.
- Not considering your pets: You should think about pet planning when you create your estate plan to make certain you don’t end up leaving your animal homeless and uncared for if something happens to you.
- Not updating your plan: An estate plan should be updated periodically and whenever there are major life changes. Death, divorce, marriage, the birth of a child, and acquiring new assets are all different circumstances which could necessitate making a change to your estate plan.
These are just a few of many different errors people make as they engage in estate planning. Every situation is different, so you need to get personalized help from a Worcester estate planning lawyer in order to ensure you don’t make errors which could affect your loved ones and your legacy.
Getting Help Avoiding Estate Planning Mistakes
Your estate plan is one of the most important plans for the future which you will create. The plan you make shapes your legacy and affects the world you leave behind for future generations. You need to do everything you can to avoid mistakes, which means getting the right legal help. You should contact a Worcester estate planning lawyer as soon as possible to assist with the creation of your plan. If you have not updated your plan in a will but already have a plan in place, it is also a good time to call an attorney and discuss changes or modifications that you may need to make.
Contact a Worcester Estate Planning Lawyer Today
The Law Offices of James A. Miller, P.C. can provide you with the advice and advocacy you need to avoid these common estate planning mistakes and many more. We understand how important your legacy is to you and we will help you to ensure you do everything possible to protect your own future and to care for your family in the future. To learn more, give us a call at 866-370-3888 or contact us online today.
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