Wills Estate Planning Trusts

Estate Planning

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Estate Planning

Our experienced attorneys provide comprehensive legal services for Estate Planning.  When considering whether you need an Estate Plan first consider our ability to understand that we will eventually die is one of the things that distinguishes humans from other animals. Nobody really likes to dwell on the prospect of our own death. If you postpone planning for your demise until it is too late, you run the risk that your intended beneficiaries -- those you love the most -- may not receive everything you would want them to receive.  This can be effected by extra administration costs, unnecessary taxes or even squabbling among your heirs.  

Our lawyers can discuss how an Estate Plan can benefit you at a free Estate Planning Consultation or call 816-434-6611 to speak to an attorney now.

 

Is Estate Planning Important?

It allows you, while you are still living, to ensure that your property will go to the people you want, in the way you want, and when you want. It permits you to save as much as possible on taxes, court costs and attorneys' fees; and it affords the comfort that your loved ones can mourn your loss without being simultaneously burdened with unnecessary red tape and financial confusion.

All estate plans should include, at minimum, two important estate planning instruments: a durable power of attorney and a will. The first is for managing your property during your life, in case you are ever unable to do so yourself. The second is for the management and distribution of your property after death. In addition, more and more, Americans also are using revocable (or "living") trusts to avoid probate and to manage their estates both during their lives and after they're gone.

Durable Power of Attorney

Generally the durable power of attorney is an important estate planning instrument as useful as a will in certain circumstances. A power of attorney allows a person you appoint to act in your place for financial purposes when and if you ever become incapacitated.

In that case, the person you choose will be able to step in and take care of your financial affairs. Without a durable power of attorney, no one can represent you unless a court appoints a conservator or guardian. That court process takes time, costs money, and the judge may not choose the person you would prefer. In addition, under a guardianship or conservatorship, your representative may have to seek court permission to take planning steps that could be implemented immediately under a simple durable power of attorney.

Limited Power of Attorney

A limited power of attorney may give someone the right to sign a deed to property on a day when you are out of town. Or it may allow someone to sign checks for you.

General Power of Attorney

A general power is comprehensive and gives your attorney-in-fact all the powers and rights that you have yourself.

 

Our lawyers can discuss how a Durable Power of Attorney can benefit you at a free Power of Attorney Consultation or call 816-434-6611 to speak to an attorney now.