WHY DO AN ESTATE PLAN?
At Affluencer Financial, we believe the best financial plan is a holistic one that addresses all areas of your financial well-being and helps you protect your assets against all types of financial threats. Using the latest legal and financial techniques, we can help you put together a “bullet proof” estate plan which will help you:
Avoid probate delay and expenses
Reduce or eliminate estate taxes completely
Protect your assets from creditors and divorced spouses
Efficiently direct your assets to your loved ones or charity
Protect your assets in case of a disability or long term care
Delegate a person to make healthcare decisions for you in case of incapacity
WHAT HAPPENS IF I DON'T?
Without a formalized estate plan, your heirs will have to deal with the expenses, delays, and publicity of probate court, or even worse, allowing state intestacy laws to determine how your property is distributed after you are gone. This often causes confusion and disagreements between heirs and can be the cause of major family conflict.
Questions to ask your estate planner when you make an appointment:
Do I need an estate plan?
Is my estate plan up to date with 2018 tax and transfer laws?
Why is it important to avoid probate?
Should life insurance be a part of my estate plan?
Will I have to pay estate taxes, and if so, how can I avoid them?
72% of Americans have no estate plan in place.
Contrary to popular belief, estate planning is more than just about what happens after you die. Estate planning is the process of planning for your personal financial and medical issues while you’re alive, and transferring your property efficiently after you die. It is a comprehensive plan that takes care of your interests in the case of an accident, injury, or other situation where you are no longer able to care for yourself and that directs the disposition of your assets following your death. It is to take care of you, your family, and your business.
A good estate plan ensures that your interests are protected and that your legacy is preserved.
YOUR ESTATE PLAN WILL INCLUDE:
A will is a legal document explaining the person’s wishes regarding the treatment of their property when they die. I call this the “instructions manual” for the dead. This instructions manual tells people how you would like your property to be passed down and to whom. However, be careful since all Wills go through probate court before they are validated by a judge. Just because you have a will does not mean that your wishes will be granted! It is recommended that you also use a trust.
Think of the revocable trust as your personal lock-box. The assets that you place into this lock-box are protected from probate court and public information once you pass away. It will also save your beneficiaries on probate costs and heartache. Inside of this lock-box you would place your “instructions manual” (Will) which describes how you would like your assets to be treated once you are gone. The term “revocable” means that you can always change your decisions, as long as you are alive.
POWERS OF ATTORNEY
The financial power of attorney is a legal document that gives limited (or unlimited) financial powers to someone who you designate. It is a very powerful tool while you are alive. In the case that you may be incapacitated or unable to make sound financial decisions for yourself this form allows someone of your choosing to make financial decisions on your behalf.
Similar to the financial power of attorney, the healthcare power of attorney gives decision making ability to someone of your choosing, regarding your medical decisions. This is used in the case where you are unable to make decisions on your own. It allows for doctors to deal with a single point of contact when it comes to making important medical decisions.
ESTATE TAX STRATEGIES
Our clients understand how to navigate the estate tax field using advance techniques which reduce and eliminate estate taxes for the next generation. Using charitable trusts, as well as other advance techniques we are able to maximize your legacy while minimizing the impact of taxes on your estate.
OTHER IMPORTANT TASKS
Re-titling accounts so they do not get taxed upon death
Creating/updating beneficiaries on plans such as life insurance, IRAs and 401(k)s
Setting up funeral arrangements
Establishing annual financial gifts to reduce estate taxes
Establishing a guardian for living dependents