People who come to see a Temecula will and trust attorney about estate planning will usually have several goals they want to accomplish, including leaving an inheritance for their family, making sure any minor children are adequately taken care of, and making the process as painless as possible. Most people think that all of this will be accomplished with a simple Last Will and Testament, but the reality is that creating a Will is just one tiny part of the entire estate planning process.
Instead, some goals will need to be addressed with more complex solutions. They include:
Inheritance and Gift Taxes
Planning for taxes can get complicated, namely in the form of planning for inheritance taxes, gift taxes, and capital gains taxes. Obviously, most people want to pay as little in the way of taxes as possible, and that is always the goal when creating a solid estate plan. But, the methods necessary to accomplish this goal really depend on the individual’s asset portfolio and unique personal situation. When it comes to tax planning, one size rarely fits all.
Long-Term Care and Medi-Cal
Most people are wary of the costs involved with long-term care and Medi-Cal – and with good reason. There are horror stories out there of people losing their entire life savings, and even their own houses, just to pay for a few months of long-term care at a nursing home facility. And if you try to qualify for Medi-Cal, you will come up against very strict income and asset limits to even be considered eligible for benefits. An estate planning lawyer can help you develop a strategy early to deal with these difficulties, whether by gifting assets to family members, setting up irrevocable trusts, or buying long-term care insurance to reduce the total financial impact of these long-term care expenses.
Most people with large families are very worried that their family members will come into conflict after they pass away. Some fear that a family member will contest their wishes in court, while others think that some family members will behave unscrupulously. Experienced estate planning lawyers have seen it all and know what to do to help avoid these scenarios. For example, they can add certain provisions to a Last Will and Testament or Revocable Living Trust that cause beneficiaries to lose their inheritance if they bring an unsuccessful lawsuit against the estate plan in court.
If you have any questions about creating an estate plan, or if you’d like to have your current estate plan reviewed to make sure it still fits your needs, please call us at (800) 244-8814 to set up an initial consultation.