Procrastination is common, especially when what we have to accomplish seems like a giant we need to slay. That can happen when it comes to estate planning. It may seem like a monumental task that is best left for another day. Or you may simply not want to think about your own mortality. However, you don’t want to make one of the three classic blunders regarding this crucial task. Here are three things to avoid:
- Waiting until it is too late – From car accidents to illnesses, there are so many things that could result in a healthy person being tragically taken or incapacitated. You need to have your estate plan in place now, just in case.
- Failing to review your plan after life changes – From a wedding or birth to a divorce or death, you need to review your plan every time you experience a major change in life circumstances. Moving to a new state also counts since your plan with have to reflect state legislation.
- Using a DIY will off the Internet – When you are planning for the future of your family, you don’t want to leave anything to chance. A professional can help ensure that your estate goes to your heirs instead of the government.
Estate Planning Professionals in Southern California
Don’t delay. Get help with your estate plan now. The pros at Petrov Law Firm can help you develop an estate plan from scratch or review and amend an existing plan. Call 619.344.0360 to get started today!Read More
Having a child is a momentous occasion in the life of a family. Whether this is your first or you have several little ones running around the family home, you have reasons for joy. You also have reasons to revisit your estate plan. Here are some things you may need to change now that you have children in the household.
- Legal guardian planning – No parent wants to think about their child having to go through the loss of a parent at a young age. However, accidents can happen, and the loving thing to do is to be prepared. That means assigning guardianship of your minor children should anything cause you and your spouse both to pass away at the same time.
- Putting a trust in place for each child – A trust is a great way to ensure that your child will be well taken care of, even if you die before they reach legal age. The money will be protected in the trust, and a loyal successor trustee can ensure that the funds are used to care for your child until he or she is old enough to accept the assets themselves.
Don’t Wait to Begin Estate Planning if You Have Children
Now is the time to get your estate planning squared away, and don’t forget to review your plan every time you add a new member to the family. Petrov Law Firm is here to help. Just call 619.344.0360 to ensure your family is protected.Read More
An irrevocable living trust can be a vital part of your estate planning. How can you get the most from this useful tool? Here are a few things to consider.
- The right successor trustee is crucial – When you die, your living trust becomes irrevocable. That means the decisions you have previously made regarding the trust will stand. Who will carry out those wishes? The successor trustee will do so. Therefore, it is essential to appoint someone who can handle the responsibility and who is trustworthy.
- Control your assets while you are still living – The successor trustee won’t play a role in the trust until after you pass away. While you are still alive, you can exert control over the trust and do as you see fit with your assets.
- Avoid probate for beneficiaries – Probate court can cause issues for your beneficiaries. For example, the assets may be tied up for a long time if there are disputes. This can drain your estate of funds that should go to your heirs. Probate is also public record, so anyone can look up what your beneficiaries received from your estate. Setting up a trust avoids these issues.
Estate Planning Attorneys in San Diego
From North County to Chula Vista, San Diego residents can turn to Petrov Law Firm for all of your estate planning needs. To learn more, give our experienced attorneys a call today at 619.344.0360. We look forward to helping you successfully plan ahead for the future of your family.Read More
A divorce is a major life change. It can occupy much of your time and your thoughts, even if you are the one who initiated the change and feel that it is for the best. At a sensitive time like this, you don’t want to make mistakes regarding your finances, which may be heavily affected by the divorce. One thing to review is your estate plan. Here are two reasons:
- Making changes to your beneficiaries – Your ex was probably the primary beneficiary on your life insurance policy, retirement accounts, POD bank accounts, and the like. You need to change those beneficiaries as soon as possible because not everything goes through probate, and your executor won’t be able to stop your ex from getting those funds if you forget to change the name on the accounts.
- Planning for your children – If you are no longer leaving everything to your ex, then you need to make plans to care for any kids you had together. This is especially true if you plan to remarry. Your next spouse may not feel the need to share your assets with kids from your previous marriage, especially if you have children together.
Family Friendly Estate Planning in San Diego
Petrov Law Firm can help walk you through planning for a traditional family, a blended family, or even for leaving behind charitable contributions. To learn more, contact us today at 619.344.0360. Our estate planning attorneys will be happy to get your plans moving forward.Read More
Probate court can drain valuable resources from your estate and cause your loved ones to have to wait to receive their inheritance. How can you fast track some of the funds that your family will need when you pass away? The type of bank accounts that you use can help. Here are two to consider:
- Joint accounts – This is the best option for couples. You can share the bank account. If something happens to one of you, the other will retain access to the account. The only downside to joint accounts is that anyone else on the account has access to the funds at any time, even while you are still alive, which is why this is not a common account for other relationships besides marriage mates.
- Payable on death (POD) accounts – This option is better when you want someone to inherit the money immediately if something happens to you, but you don’t want them accessing your funds while you are still alive. You name a beneficiary who receives the remaining account funds when you pass away. Just remember that you have to change the beneficiary name immediately if you want someone else to get the money. There will be no way for anyone to contest the beneficiary after you die.
Southern California’s Estate Planning Experts
Petrov Law Firm can help you to have things in order well in advance of any emergency situations or end of life decisions. This can give you and your family peace of mind. Call 619.344.0360 to discuss your options with an experienced estate planning attorney.Read More
The novel coronavirus has a lot of people thinking about the future of their family and estate. The good news is that couples have a lot of great estate planning options available to them in California. Here are a few situations that call for specific types of trusts.
- You have a very large estate – An A/B trust can help to protect your estate when it is large enough to be impacted by the estate tax. Obviously, this is rare, but the option exists for those fortunate enough to be in this category.
- You want to leave everything to the one and only mate you have ever had – A survivor’s trust is perfect if you want to leave your spouse everything, and you have not been previously married to anyone else.
- You have a blended family or a smaller estate – A survivor’s trust with QTIP is good for remarried individuals and those who don’t have as much to leave to their family.
There are also additional options for people who fall into very specific categories, such as the marital disclaimer trust. Hiring an experienced estate planning attorney will help you to understand which estate planning documents are the best for you and your loved ones.
Southern California’s Estate Planning Attorneys
If you are planning for an estate in or near the San Diego area, contact Petrov Law Firm at 619.344.0360. We can help you to customize an estate plan to meet your family’s unique situation.Read More
Trusts can help your estate to bypass probate court. This allows your beneficiaries to receive the full amount you leave to them without having to wait or pay court fees. What are a few types of trusts that you may not know about?
- QPRT – A qualified personal residence trust allows you to transfer ownership of a property that you own to a family member without them having to pay the current value. This protects your assets while you are still alive, and it offers tax benefits for you now.
- IDGT – An intentionally defective grantor trust is the way to pass a family business to a beneficiary. It also offers some protection against creditors for the family. So if you have a business and want to keep business and personal assets separate, this is an important trust to know.
- CRT – A charitable remainder trust is one to know if you want to leave some of your estate to charity. Additionally, your beneficiaries may receive tax benefits if you leave part of your estate to a charity in this way, so it benefits your family while doing a good deed for the community.
Gifting Through Trusts to Protect Your Assets
Petrov Law Firm wants to help you ensure that the maximum amount of your estate goes to your beneficiaries rather than being wasted on court fees, high taxes, and other things that can cut into an inheritance. Call 619.344.0360 to discuss options for working on your estate now.Read More
Whether you are in your 30s or even 20s, it is still a good idea to have an estate plan, especially now. Why should you have a will and medical directive at the very least? Here are a few important reasons.
- Accidents can happen – Tragic accidents don’t care about your age. It is important to have an estate plan in place, even if you have not had time to save up a lot of money yet. This will benefit your family if anything should ever happen to you.
- You need to make healthcare decisions – Estate planning is about more than just money. Having an advance medical directive in place can allow you to make healthcare decisions in advance. It also lets you choose an advocate to speak for you should you ever become incapacitated.
- COVID-19 can impact any family – The new coronavirus has brought the importance of estate planning to the fore. After all, a person can go from healthy to on a ventilator in a matter of days. Will the hospital know who to contact, who is authorized to make medical decisions for you, or what decisions you have already made in advance?
Planning for the Future in an Ever-Changing World
Regardless of your age, the modern world dictates planning for the unknown. Petrov Law Firm can help. To speak with an experienced estate planning attorney, call 619.344.0360 today. Remember that estate planning is about more than just money. Take control of your future today!Read More
At the time of the writing of this article, California already has more than 4,000 cases of coronavirus. With nearly 25,000 deaths globally due to this pandemic, you can’t afford to leave the future of your family to chance. Here are two important steps to take regarding your estate plan (or lack thereof) in California.
- Get started today – If you don’t already have an estate plan in place, now is the time to jump into action. Don’t assume you are too young to be affected either. Parents especially need to take care to protect their mate or minor children by means of a competent estate plan.
- Review your existing plan – If you already have an estate plan, now is the time to review it to ensure that your current wishes are stated clearly. Now is not the time to accidentally have an ex as your retirement fund beneficiary or to have an estate plan that never changed when you moved from one state to another (each state has its own laws regarding estate planning). You always want to be certain that your medical wishes are up to date.
Planning Ahead Is Not Alarmist – It’s Smart
We hope that you and your family enjoy your time at home together during this pandemic without incident, but the course of wisdom is to be prepared. If you need to begin or update an estate plan in southern California, Petrov Law Firm can help. Call 619.344.0360 to get in touch with an estate planning attorney today.Read More
With the coronavirus pandemic sweeping the world, now is not the time to have an outdated advance healthcare directive. Since regulations regarding a living will are different from state to state, if you have moved to California, your existing living will may not even be legally binding. Here are a few reasons to update your existing health care directive today.
- Make decisions in advance – If you end up incapacitated by coronavirus or any other disease, your family may face difficult decisions. You can make things easier by having your own decisions down in writing in advance.
- Choose a healthcare agent – Your directive allows you to select an agent in advance who will make decisions for you if you become medically incapacitated. When you combine this with leaving specific instructions, you create the circumstances under which your wishes are the most likely to be carried out, even if you cannot advocate for yourself.
- Inform your family – An advance directive is also a good way to let your family know what your wishes are so that no one is shocked if the situation arises and your agent makes the call for you.
Prepare or Update Your Advance Healthcare Directive Today
This is something that everyone in the state should have in place – now more than ever. To prepare or update your advance medical directive in southern California, you can call the professional estate planning attorneys at Petrov Law Firm. Just dial 619.344.0360 to get the legal help you need to execute this document properly.Read More