DIY has become a buzzword with fewer and fewer people wanting to pay someone else to do something that they think they can handle themselves. That’s great when it comes to most things. However, planning for your future and for the benefit of your heirs is one of the times that you don’t want to take chances. Here are three reasons to pass on using a DIY will for your estate plan.
- Interpretation Disputes – You may be an eloquent person, but that doesn’t mean your every word will be interpreted correctly or the same way by two different people. If there is a dispute over what something you say in your will means, it can tie your estate up in probate court for years and result in a great deal of your assets going to the court system rather than to your beneficiaries. That isn’t what you’ve worked so hard for all your life.
- Mistakes – Even if you get a little online legal assistance from a site that helps you put together a will, you don’t get the personal attention that you would from a local estate planning lawyer who is specifically experienced with the laws in your state. Mistakes in wording or even in omitting something (like failure to name a healthcare agent) can lead to major issues.
- Peace of Mind – You shouldn’t have to wonder if your will is going to be good enough. Hiring an estate planning attorney can provide you with peace of mind. You will know that all of your bases are covered and that your family’s future is secure.
Hire the Right California Estate Planning Attorneys
If you are planning for the future in the state of California, Petrov Law Firm has the estate planning lawyers you want on your team. Our compassion and experience will make the process as simple as possible and provide you with the peace of mind you want. To get started, call us today at 619-344-0360.Read More
Establishing a trust is a great way to eliminate all of the problems that come along with probate. Your family won’t have to worry about the court fees or deal with an executor. This can prevent long delays in receiving the inheritance. However, it is still important to choose the right successor trustee in order to ensure that your estate is in good hands until it gets to your beneficiaries. Here are a few ways to keep your successor trustee from making the most common mistakes.
- Hire an Accountant – Unless your trustee is particularly good with numbers and understands accounting, this is the best way to ensure that there are no errors in the record keeping. Plus, having two people to check each other’s numbers keeps everyone honest.
- Outline Instructions Clearly – Sometimes a trustee can get confused about the role that he or she plays. To eliminate confusion, make sure your estate planning documents outline how you want your trustee to act, including how the assets are preserved until they reach your beneficiaries.
- Provide Adequate Compensation – Your trustee knows how much has been set aside for your beneficiaries. The trustee is doing all of the work. So while you may leave a relatively small percent of your estate to compensate the trustee, it should be enough to ensure he or she doesn’t feel cheated or isn’t moved to maneuver for a little additional compensation from your family.
- Be Objective – Sentimentality cannot guide your choice of a successor trustee. It has to be the person who is best suited for the job. Otherwise, problems are likely to come about.
Assistance in Developing a Trust and Other Estate Planning in California
The estate planning attorneys at Petrov Law Firm are experienced in helping California residents to plan properly for the future. To learn more, contact us today at 619-344-0360.Read More
No one wants to think about the end of his or her life. However, if you have anything to leave behind to your loved ones, you have probably at least gone through the mental exercise of deciding who gets what. There are other elements of an estate plan, however, that require engaging the emotions. Here are a few things to consider:
- Protecting the emotions of survivors – When you pass away, there will be people who mourn you. Your estate plan can make things easier for But you need to consider now what emotional burdens your family may face so you can plan accordingly. For example, will it save infighting if you detail how you want the funeral to be arranged?
- Keep private matters private – A last will and testament becomes public record when you die. So if you don’t want everyone being able to look into your business, it is better to consider other estate planning options such as leaving assets to your loved ones by means of a trust. This can keep anyone from having hard feelings over knowing who received which parts of your estate.
- Leaving behind a legacy – You may wish to leave private letters or videos for your beneficiaries to provide advice or just to say goodbye and give them a memento. Your estate is a great way to pass on heirlooms, family lore, and other priceless history that may not have monetary value but plenty of sentimental value.
California’s Compassionate Estate Planning Attorneys
If you want estate planning attorneys on your side who can help you to navigate both the logical and emotional side of planning for the future, you want the compassionate lawyers at Petrov Law Firm in your corner. Contact us today at 619-344-0360 to start planning how to leave your loved ones something truly special.Read More
Some people are willing to take the chance that everything will pass to their spouse and kids. Others are content to draw up a will and let the courts have their part in matters. But if you want your family to receive your estate with an increased degree of certainty and without the courts causing delays and expenses, there are two things you need to include in your estate planning.
- Trusts – A trust can allow your heirs to skip probate. You can manage the trust while you are alive and appoint a successor trustee to carry out your wishes and disseminate the trust in your absence. It gives you the flexibility you need while you are alive and provides your beneficiaries with the convenience of fewer court fees and the excessive time it may take to receive funds if probate is involved.
- Power of Attorney – Whether you are appointing a healthcare agent to make medical decisions should you become incapacitated or a power of attorney to make financial decisions, this is a great way to block courts from stepping in and appointing a conservatorship to take care of matters for you. You can outline your wishes in advance and appoint someone you trust to carry out those wishes as opposed to whomever the court may grant guardianship to.
Smart Estate Planning in Southern California
Petrov Law Firm offers smart estate planning options to residents of San Diego and the surrounding areas. If you are ready to take control of your future rather than leaving it in the hands of the court system, give us a call today at 619-344-0360.Read More
When it comes to estate planning, trusts are an excellent way to protect your family from drawn-out court proceedings and expensive probate hearings. We’re going to look at two of those options, and how they may be able to add a level of protection to your estate plan.
Revocable Living Trust
A revocable living trust is a great way to leave your estate to your beneficiaries without having it go through probate. You can even serve as the trustee while you are still alive and control what goes into the estate personally. Then you can appoint a successor trustee to distribute things to the right heirs at the right time. Some people even decide to make the revocable living trust the beneficiary of their life insurance policy. That makes it payable to the trust beneficiaries and no one else.
Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust
This type of trust helps you to administer the benefits of one or more life insurance policies for your beneficiaries. It provides tax benefits and protects the insurance money from creditors. You can also fund the trust with other assets besides just your insurance policies. Those assets can be used to pay the insurance premiums.
Planning for Your Estate in California
If you have an estate to leave to beneficiaries in California, even if it is primarily your life insurance policy, you can still benefit from the professional advice of the estate planning attorneys at the Petrov Law Firm. To get started, give our San Diego office a call at 619-344-0360.Read More
You are to be commended if you already have an estate plan in place. It shows that you care about your beneficiaries and you want things to go as smoothly as possible for them once you are no longer here or even if you become incapacitated for a time.
However, things come up in life that require changes to an existing estate plan. If you come across any of these life experiences, it is time to change your estate plan as soon as possible.
- Marriage – Whether you have a previous marriage or not, you want to be sure that there is nothing in your estate plan that would keep your new mate from inheriting his or her fair share of your assets.
- Birth or Adoption – This would include your children or any grandchildren. Don’t forget that if you divided everything evenly between several kids and grandkids that you will have to add in the latest child or grandchild so no one gets left out.
- Divorce – It is unlikely you want a former mate to receive anything, or at least not the same share he or she would have received while you were married. Don’t forget to change the name of your beneficiary on your retirement funds or life insurance policies.
- Death of an Heir – There are times when sadly we outlive our successors. It is especially important to select a new executor or successor trustee quickly should one of them pass away.
- You Move Out of State – Different states and countries have varying laws. So if you have moved to a new state or country, you need to review your estate plan. If you have moved to California, give Petrov Law Firm a call.
San Diego’s Estate Planning Attorneys
Petrov Law Firm has the estate planning attorneys you need to help you enact or update an estate plan. Call us today at 619-344-0360 to get started!Read More
We’re going to take a look at three often unforeseen events that can threaten to ruin a person’s estate plans. How can you develop a plan that is protected against these potential dangers?
#1 Family Conflict
Sometimes an inheritance can come between even the closest of family members. With that in mind, it is important to be specific about who gets what in your estate planning. You may choose to have an executor or trustee be an unbiased non-family member if you anticipate any possible issues.
#2 Simultaneous Death of Both Mates
If you plan on leaving everything to your surviving mate, you need an alternate plan in place should you both pass away together. This may occur in an accident if the two of you spend a lot of travel time together, so it is best to plan ahead just in case, so tragedy isn’t compounded by confusion over what happens to your estate.
#3 Death in a Foreign Country
If you don’t live in the country where your estate plan was formed, or you intend to travel to another country, it is important to see if anything in your estate plan conflicts with the laws of the other country you will be in. This will help things to go smoothly should you pass away while overseas.
Planning for Your Future With an Estate Planning Lawyer in California
Petrov Law Firm is here to help you include all of the contingencies you may require from your estate planning documents. To learn more, contact our San Diego or Chula Vista offices today by calling 619-344-0360.Read More
When it comes to estate planning, the most dangerous attitude to have is that if you simply choose to do nothing your mate and children will automatically inherit everything anyway. First of all, there are a lot of exceptions to the rule when it comes to automatic inheritance. Second, estate planning is about so much more than who gets what.
Will the Right Loved Ones Receive Your Estate?
One of the biggest factors that people fail to think about when it comes to succession is that nearly a fifth of Americans are not in what was once considered a typical family structure. For example, many are on a second marriage (or perhaps more than that). There are adoptions, stepfamilies, and blended families. Grandparents may be raising grandchildren. In these and many other situations, you can’t rely on the state to pass along your assets to the people you want them to go to and in the amounts you view as fair.
What Else Estate Planning Prepares For
Even if your family is the most traditional of households, your estate planning will still benefit your loved ones. It can help them to avoid a lengthy and expensive probate process. It can also provide instructions for your healthcare should you become seriously incapacitated during your final months or years. It also allows you to dictate how you want funeral arrangements to be cared for, so there is no disagreement between grieving family members. Taking care of these matters in advance is both loving and kind.
Helping You Prepare Estate Documents in California
Petrov Law Firm is proud to help California residents prepare in advance for these and many other situations. If you live in the San Diego or Chula Vista areas, contact our estate planning attorneys today by calling 619-344-0360.Read More
Money isn’t everything when it comes to proper estate planning. We’re going to look at three ways you can put your personal stamp on your estate and pass on more than just material assets to the next generation.
- Tell Your Story – More than just saying which of your heirs receive property, bank accounts, or other assets, be sure to include something of emotional and spiritual value for your family. By recording events that comprise your own life story and leaving these documents, audio files, or videos to successors, you can also pass along a wealth of knowledge and experience.
- Family Heirlooms – Be sure to include specific direction regarding who is to receive certain family heirlooms and why they are special. Even something as simple as grandma’s pasta bowl that she brought over from the old country can take on greater significance when left to a relative along with the story of how it has been passed through the generations.
- Share Your Values – Modern businesses have core values, but really they are just trying to imitate people. What are your values? Have you shared them with your family? By planning your estate the right way, you can show the value you place on things such as education and charity.
Estate Planning that Is Uniquely You in San Diego, CA
If you are looking for estate planning attorneys in California, the experienced professionals at Petrov Law Firm can help you to create a Will or Trusts that meet your unique needs and wants. To learn more, contact us today by calling 619-344-0360.Read More
How do you want to be remembered? Someone who leaves lots of money to heirs may be remembered as successful or even generous. However, you may desire to create a greater legacy for yourself. How can you use estate planning to pass on more than just cash? Here are three ways.
- Audio and Video Files – The modern generation is all about technology. The best way to reach young minds and hearts is through digital media. Audio and video files that you leave behind allotting your wealth of life experience can make a great impact on your heirs and import vital values to those you leave behind so they don’t have to make the same mistakes that you did.
- Photos and Letters – Of course, there is a place for old-school media in an estate plan as well. Whether it is a family photo album with names and dates to share the family legacy or handwritten letters to family members, this gives you the opportunity to personalize the message you pass along to your beneficiaries.
- Specific Trusts – This is a great way to create a legacy. Leave funds in trust for a charitable organization you support. Create an educational trust for school-age Leave behind incentive trusts that are to be used for specific things so that funds are only dispensed when your nephew finally decides to open that restaurant, or your children take their kids on an annual family vacation.
Creating a Legacy Through Estate Planning
If you want to leave behind more than just money, Petrov Law Firm would be proud to help you develop an estate plan to meet your needs. If you are in the San Diego or Chula Vista, California areas, contact us today at 619-344-0360 to get started.Read More