If you have been named the executor of someone’s last will and testament in the state of California, then you have a weighty responsibility to carry out. Here are three tips to help you succeed.
- Communicate well – You are going to have to spend a lot of time on the phone negotiating the estate’s taxes, debts, and creditors. You also need to stay in constant communication with the court and with the beneficiaries.
- Stay organized – There is a lot to do as an executor, so being organized is a necessity. Be sure to keep track for the decedent’s wishes as well as important documents while you are working out the details for the heirs.
- Get help from an estate attorney – Estate planning attorneys have experience both helping people plan for their estate as well as helping executors to carry out the task that has been placed upon them. While you may worry about spending some of the estate on legal counsel, it’s far better than making a mistake that could cost the beneficiaries a large sum or tie up the money for months or even years.
Estate Planning Lawyers in San Diego
For the best estate planning lawyers in San Diego, North County, and Chula Vista, residents turn to Petrov Law Firm. We’re here to help you whether you are planning for your own future or carrying out the wishes that you have been entrusted with. Contact us today by calling 619-344-0360 and schedule an appointment at one of our three convenient locations.Read More
Estate planning is crucial, so we want to commend you if you have already taken this important step toward providing for your family in the future. However, it is important to remember that you need to review your plan from time to time to make sure it still outlines your wishes. Here are a few times to go over your estate to make sure everything is still the way you want it.
- It’s been a long time – Never let more than five years go by without looking at your estate plan. Every three years is even better. Sometimes your wishes may change, or you may need to make some adjustments due to changes in state or federal laws.
- You’ve experienced a major life event – A few examples would include a new member of the family, a divorce, death of a beneficiary or successor trustee, and anything like these. You need to make sure your estate plan accounts for the people that are moving in or out of your life.
- Your financial situation has dramatically changed – Whether you have a lot more money all of a sudden or significantly less, it is time to go over your estate plan to make sure you are distributing your assets in the best way possible.
San Diego’s Source for Updated Estate Plans
Another major reason to check your estate plan is when you move to a new state. Petrov Law Firm has the California estate planning attorneys you can trust to help you update your future planning documents. Call us today at 619-344-0360.Read More
Most people don’t think about how long they may spend in assisted living or a nursing home before they pass away. However, if you are planning on leaving an estate to your heirs, you need to think about these things. Here are three reasons that you need to think about long-term care when you plan for the future of your family.
- It’s really expensive – Most assisted living or rest home facilities are going to cost your estate upwards of $40,000 per year, and some may be in the six figures range depending on the services you want access to.
- Your insurance won’t cover it – Things like Medicare don’t cover long-term care. Even most private insurance doesn’t cover this type of care. There are lifecare plans, but they are also expensive, so you need to be sure you don’t go through your savings paying in advance for long-term care you may not even need.
- You may be surprised by how many people require care – 40% of people are going to end up in some sort of care facility, even if it is not for very long. A mere year or two can be costly. If you are in the 10% who spend upwards of three years in a nursing home, that can eliminate the life savings of many people.
Planning Ahead for Long-Term Care in San Diego
Let Petrov Law Firm help you to plan your estate so that it goes to your family and not a long-term care facility. Call us today at 619.344.0360 to learn how we can help.Read More
Probate court definitely has its place, especially when a person passes away with no last will and testament or when there are conflicts among a person’s heirs. However, if you are planning to leave your estate to your loved ones, there are a few reasons to try and keep your assets out of probate court.
- It’s public record – Do you really want just anyone to be able to look up what your family received? It could potentially make them a target for scams, so it is better to keep these matters private.
- It can drain funds – You intend your savings to go to your family, but if probate court becomes drawn out, much of the inheritance could end up paying legal fees.
- It delays your beneficiaries from receiving their inheritance – Until the court works out what needs to go for taxes and other liabilities against the estate and who should receive the rest, the assets are effectively tied up and unusable. While probate court usually handles matters within a few months, there have been cases that drag on for a year or even several years while heirs have no access to the dwindling funds.
California Estate Planning Attorneys
If you want your loved ones to get as much of your estate as possible as quickly as possible after you pass on, the estate planning attorneys at Petrov Law Firm can help. Call 619.344.0360 today and schedule a consultation at one of our three convenient locations in southern California to learn more.Read More
Being a successor trustee is a huge responsibility, and depending on the amount of funds left to you to help you carry out the assignment, there may not be a very big payoff. How can you be loyal to the trustor and carry out your duty in a fine manner? Here are a few tips:
- Get help with bookkeeping – You may have been selected because you are trustworthy, not for your math skills. In that case, it may especially be important to hire an accountant to help out. If it is a sizable trust, the beneficiary should be happy you have the extra help rather than being concerned that the accountant’s fee will mean there is slightly less in the trust for him or her.
- Avoid envy – This may not be as difficult if the trustor also left you a nice sum, but if you are doing all the work and the beneficiary is wasteful with money, it can be easy to give in to envy and think you deserve the money rather than him or her.
- Don’t go beyond your role – Your job is to carry out the wishes of the trustor. He or she believed you would put those wishes ahead of your own personal gain. That’s how you became the trustee in the first place. Stick to the instructions you’ve been provided.
California Estate Plan Assistance
For help from the estate planning attorneys southern California residents trust, call Petrov Law Firm today at 619-344-0360.Read More
Whether you are planning for many different aspects of your estate or you simply want to execute a will, an estate planning attorney is always a good idea. There are three reasons to hire an estate planning attorney rather than downloading a do-it-yourself template from the Internet.
- Avoid estate planning blunders – Your estate planning attorney will be able to give you personalized attention so that you don’t leave something out by accident or include something that adds confusion to the wording. Generic, downloadable wills rarely meet the specific needs of each person.
- Include additional estate planning documents – A downloadable will doesn’t make plans for things like medical decisions and emergencies. You need an advanced health directive. An estate planning attorney can help you to prepare for every situation, not just for the distribution of your assets after you pass.
- Choose the right executor, trustees, and other advocates – Your estate planning attorney can help you to recognize the importance of selecting the right individuals to carry out these roles. That means understanding what these appointed individuals are assigned to do, so you can select the people in your life who best fit the description.
The Estate Planning Attorneys for Southern California Residents
You also need an estate planning attorney who understands state laws regarding succession and healthcare matters. Contact Petrov Law Firm to have our experienced attorneys help you develop a customized estate plan to meet your family’s needs. Call us today at 619-344-0360 to get started.Read More
Whether you have a last will and testament or no estate planning at all, California probate court is going to play a role in the dispensation of your assets after you pass away. Here are a few things that you should know about probate so that you can plan for your estate the best way possible.
- You only have an executor if you prepare a will. The court will have someone handle the dispensation if you do not have any estate planning in place.
- Probate court makes sure that any existing tax debts are paid before the remaining assets are distributed to your heirs. This may reduce how much your beneficiaries receive, but at least they don’t have to worry about the taxman showing up and demanding money.
- Probate is public record, so if you don’t want everyone to know what you left to your family, then you need to find a way to keep it from going through probate.
- Probate can get expensive and tie up your assets for months or even years before your beneficiaries get anything. The best way to avoid this is to find alternative ways to leave assets directly to your family or to be very clear in your will rather than using a template from the Internet.
Estate Planning Assistants from the Pros in Southern California
The estate planning attorneys at Petrov Law Firm can help you to keep your assets out of probate court, so they are not wasted or held up. Call us today at 619-344-0360 to learn more.Read More
It is possible to make your retirement funds work hand in hand with your trusts and other estate planning. Making your trust the beneficiary of your retirement plan is one of the main ways to do this.
At first, the reason may seem obvious. You want to put everything you can into your trust so it doesn’t go through probate. But this is not the reason for making your trust the beneficiary of your retirement account. After all, your retirement account passes directly to the named beneficiary, so it will never go through probate. So what is the reason for making your trust the beneficiary? Here are two good reasons:
- Keeps your beneficiaries from removing the funds prematurely – If you pass away while your spouse is still under the retirement age, you don’t want them making a mistake that could cost a lot of money by removing the funds from the account too early and receiving a penalty.
- Keeps your beneficiaries from removing too much from the fund at once – Taking retirement funds in a lump sum can result in huge amounts of taxation. Your successor trustee can help your beneficiary to understand the consequences and to make better decisions.
Planning Ahead for Your Family’s Needs
The estate planning attorneys at Petrov Law Firm can help you to make things easier for your family. Call us today at 619-344-0360 to set up an estate plan that really works for your needs.Read More
Many people see estate planning as morbid. No one wants to think about death. However, estate planning is really about the future of your loved ones. That should make it easier to think about. With that in mind, here are the three worst things people do regarding estate planning (so you can avoid making the same mistakes):
- Not doing it – If you don’t have a house and millions of dollars, you may think estate planning serves no purpose. However, estate planning allows you to make advance medical and funeral decisions and saves your family time and expense when it comes to probate court. It’s the loving thing to do.
- Leaving it for “tomorrow” – We always think there is going to be more time. But what if you are in an accident, experience a natural disaster, or are just in the wrong place at the wrong time when the next mass shooting happens. It’s sad to say, but there is no one who is exempt from tragedy, so start on your estate plan today.
- Not hiring a professional – You may be able to print a cookie cutter will from the internet and fill in your wishes, but unless you have legal experience, you can’t really understand what you are signing. It’s far better to get the help of an estate planning attorney.
Estate Planning Attorneys in San Diego
At Petrov Law Firm, we assist families like yours to have a greater degree of certainty about the future by helping you make plans now. Call 619-344-0360 today to get started on your plans. Someday, your family will be grateful you thought of them.Read More
If you have young children, you are probably still fairly young yourself. As a result, you may not have given a lot of thought to what might happen to your family should you pass away. However, if you have minor children, you have to do your estate planning now. Here are two ways you can protect your kids with a good estate plan.
- Plan ahead for guardianship – Don’t leave it up to the state to determine who gets your kids if something happens to you and your spouse at the same time. Planning ahead shows love for your children and will give them the best situation possible if they have to deal with the trial of suddenly becoming orphans.
- Have a trust fund prepared – This will ensure that your kids will have the funds they need when they turn 18. It can also provide funds for the guardians. Or you can specify dispensations such as for college or for a wedding. This will make things easier for the trustee and will help your child to avoid squandering his or her inheritance.
Estate Planning Is a Must for Parents
You don’t have to be a millionaire to want your children to be cared for. No one can take care of your kids like you can, but with a little planning, you can make it easier on them should tragedy strike your family. Contact Petrov Law Firm today at 619-344-0360 to get your estate plan started, and let our experienced attorneys help you get things in order.Read More