Wednesday, May 6, 2009

WHAT IS ESTATE PLANNING?

WHAT IS ESTATE PLANNING?

ESTATE PLANNING IS THE WAY A PERSON PLANS THE DISPOSITION OF THEIR PROPERTY AND ASSETS WHEN THEY DIE.

Estate Planning helps people eliminate uncertainities of what will happen to their assets and property by the establishment of a written, and legally enforceable, plan.

Some of the goals that the average person seeks to accomplish in an Estate Plan are:

1. Avoidance of probate (i.e., going to court to settle the estate);

2. Maximizing the value of the estate by reducing taxes and other expenses;

3. Nomination of guardians for minor children;

4. Designation of specific beneficiaries, and the percentage of the estate they will receive;

5. Exclusion of certain family members from being a beneficiary; and

6. Naming a trusted family member or friend to adminster the estate.

There are other goals, but these are the most typical.

Estate Plans prepared by a qualified and experienced attorney include Trusts and/or Wills, Powers of Attorney (both for Health Care and Asset Management), Advance Directives (Living Wills), and other documents which work in coordination with the overall Estate Plan.

I practice law in Orange County, California; and Estate Planning is a primary focus of my practice.

DWIGHT EDWARD TOMPKINS, Attorney at Law

http://www.tompkins-law.com

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