The Components of an Estate Plan
- Wills and trusts
- Other estate plan documents
- Powers of attorney
- Advance health care directives/living wills
- Other documents
- Estate administration
- Life gifts and transfers
- Special needs planning
- Probate avoidance
- Guardianships and conservatorships
The estate plan you make for the future of your estate and your family really makes a difference at the end of your life. Probate issues are complex, and they happen at the worst time. When you are grieving a loved one, the last thing you want to do is handle legal affairs. It is best to save your family this heartache and avoid complex probate and trust litigation with a complete and thorough estate plan.
The First Step in Making an Estate Plan:
It is commonly known among attorneys that less than half of all people in the United States have a will. If you do not have a will, state laws will determine the distribution your property when you die. There are certain rules called the “Rules of Intestate Succession” that apply. When you call our office we will explain to you how those rules will affect your particular family’s estate planning.
If you have children, the court in the county in which your children reside will decide where they will live and who will make important decisions about their money, education, and way of life. You may have people you know and trust that are better suited for this job and will want to make this selection in your will.
You care about your family and you want to provide for them. An estate plan is a part of your family’s overall legal health check-up. This can also help you to provide for your children’s college tuition and your retirement.
People often wonder what is a will. A will is a simple estate planning document that allows you to tell your loved ones what you want to have happen to your property. It will also allow you to name who will take care of your children after your death. The same will allows you to nominate a person who will also handle the distribution of your estate to your designated beneficiaries. This person will handle how your money is spent.
Some people do a video or audio will, which records the will verbally and allows the person to explain why certain gifts were made or why gifts were not made. This can be used to show that at the time of the signing of the will the person was mentally competent to sign the will and that the will was executed in the correct manner. We can help you with this part of the estate plan process as well.
There are many misconceptions about wills and other estate plan documents. We are happy to discuss all of your options with you. You can have a comprehensive estate plan that is tailored to fit your needs.
Here are a few things your estate plan can do:
- Designate what each of your loved ones will receive from the estate
- Designate who will not receive assets from the estate
- Provide immediate and/or delayed funds for loved ones
- Provide a detailed plan for the payment of bills and the use of your money after death
- Allow for asset distribution more quickly and with less expense
- Designate who will administer your estate or care for you before you die
- Outline funeral or final burial arrangements and desires
- Provide for a way to continue or transfer a business interest
- Help a charity or other good cause
- Reduce taxes when possible
- Designate who will take care of your children with a Parental Power of Attorney should you be traveling or unavailable for another reason
- Allow a person to make medical decisions for you by appointing a Patient Advocate
- Allow a person to make financial decisions for you by appointing a Power of Attorney
We can even look out for your best interests if the estate is in Michigan but you are out of state. We have been handling probate matters for many years and know how to navigate the system to protect your family’s interests.
If you have recently gone through a divorce, or if your family has changed in a significant way, it is time to consider your estate planning needs. At Kathryn Wayne-Spindler & Associates, we help our clients protect their financial assets with complete and comprehensive estate plans. Contact our full-service law firm for assistance with all your estate planning needs at 248-676-1000.
Kathryn Wayne-Spindler & Associates have many satisfied clients throughout the five counties of Southeastern Michigan – Oakland, Washtenaw, Wayne, Genesee and Livingston. The Michigan Family Law Attorneys of Kathryn Wayne-Spindler & Associates have one simple objective: to handle our clients’ legal worries so they can concentrate on life and family. Contact Kathryn Wayne-Spindler & Associates today to learn more about our experience and success at 248-676-1000. We are conveniently located in Milford, Michigan. We help clients throughout Milford; Highland; Hartland; White Lake; Commerce; Waterford; West Bloomfield; Walled Lake; South Lyon; New Hudson; Wixom; Linden; Holly; Fenton; Grand Blanc; Flint and many more local communities.