Whether you are new to California or just new to estate planning, an experienced attorney can help you to plan for the future of your family. Here is a checklist of things to consider if you are ready to get started with this essential process.
- Inventory both tangible and intangible assets so you know what you have to protect – tangible assets include things like houses and cars, while intangibles include retirement accounts and ownership equity in a business
- Determine your beneficiaries, insurance policies, guardians (if you have minor children), and medical wishes
- Hire an estate planning attorney in your state – this is vital because state laws on estate planning will vary
- Schedule your estate plan review – even before your estate plan is done, you should determine how often you will review it to ensure that your current wishes are specified
Your estate planning attorney will help you to evaluate your assets and the future needs of your family so that you can structure your estate plan in the most efficient manner possible. Remember that your estate plan is about more than just your assets. This is also about how you make your wishes known for everything from medical care (if you become incapacitated) to how you want your funeral/burial to be handled.
Hire the Right Estate Planning Attorneys in San Diego
Petrov Law Firm can help you to set up an estate plan in California or to update your existing plan if you have moved into the state. Call 619.344.0360 to get the help you need.Read More
A living trust is an essential component of a modern estate plan that protects your assets for your family or other beneficiaries. However, if you had your living trust drafted years ago, there may be some elements that will do more harm than good. Here are some reasons why you should review and update your trust periodically.
- Are new assets in the trust? – When you first formed the trust, you had to add your assets into it. However, if you have new accounts, properties, and other assets since then, you need to add them.
- Special needs of beneficiaries – Review the wording regarding your beneficiaries. Most people don’t want assets going to an adult child’s ex-spouse (unless they have the grandkids). Be careful with the structure of the trust if your loved one receives a government check (for example, if they are on disability). You don’t want your generous gift to negatively impact their income.
- Changes in your retirement accounts – It could be the accounts attached to the trust, or just the sheer amount of assets if you have done really well in recent years, that impact your estate planning. Remember that laws regarding how much time your beneficiaries have to take the assets from your retirement accounts has changed, and this can have major tax implications.
Get the Help You Need to Update a Living Trust in California
Petrov Law Firm has experienced estate planning attorneys who can help whether you need to set up a new estate plan or modify an existing plan. Call 619.344.0360 to get started today.Read More
You may already have an estate plan in place, which is a good way to show your mate you want to care for their future. However, having children should result in changes to your estate plan. Here are a few of the reasons.
- Preparing for the possible need for a legal guardian – When holding your newborn, you probably aren’t thinking about where they would be if you and your spouse were suddenly gone. However, every parent should prepare for legal guardianship of their child in the event of a tragedy.
- Set up a trust for dispensing inheritance – For everything from college tuition to buying a house for the first time to getting married, you want to set aside funds for the big events in your child’s life. A trust can allow you to set aside assets that your child will be able to use in the future, whether or not you are there to provide support in person.
- Increase your life insurance – When it was just you and your mate, you may not have felt the need to carry a large policy. However, if something happens to you now, you want to be sure to have a large enough life insurance policy to support a single parent. This may mean increasing your life insurance policy, especially if you provide the family’s main income.
California Estate Planning Attorneys
Petrov Law Firm can help you to update your existing estate plan or to develop a new one from scratch. Call our San Diego office at 619.344.0360 today to get started.Read More
What benefits can you expect to receive when you hire an estate planning attorney? Here are some of the services provided.
- Draft a last will and testament – This is the most basic form of estate planning but should still be drafted properly by an attorney in your state as each state has its own laws of succession.
- Designate beneficiaries – You also want to review your beneficiaries periodically or when you experience a life-changing event (birth or death in the family, divorce, marriage, etc.).
- Set up a DPA (durable power of attorney) and designate a medical DPA – This can allow someone to make financial or medical decisions for you if you become incapacitated.
- Find a workaround for the estate tax, as needed – For very large estates, this is essential so that your heirs don’t pay exorbitant tax rates.
- Reduce or eliminate the need for your estate to go through probate court – Probate can get expensive and increase the amount of time it takes for your beneficiaries to receive their inheritance.
- Establish living trusts so you can control your assets while alive but ensure they go to the right individual(s) when you pass away.
Estate Planning Attorneys in San Diego
If you live in southern California, you can easily obtain all of these benefits by contacting Petrov Law Firm. Call 619.344.0360 to speak with an estate planning attorney who is experienced with California state laws. We can help you to begin a new estate plan or review an existing plan to ensure your wishes will be properly carried out.Read More
A living trust can help maximize the benefits your family gains from your estate planning. Here are some of the advantages of this method of financial planning.
- Affordable – While it is much cheaper simply to have a will than to set up a trust, you still have to factor in things like the time and money that will go to probate court. A trust gets the money to the right heirs faster and with minimal costs.
- Flexible – Some people avoid trusts because they think their estate is too small. However, this is a very flexible form of estate planning. The size of your estate doesn’t really matter – it won’t be too large or too small. Plus, if you have a sudden change in the size of your estate, a trust is equipped to handle it.
- Retain control – A living trust allows you to keep control of all your assets while you are still alive. It is not shared, such as when having a family member’s name on your accounts. The money or assets are not locked into the estate. You can add or remove what is in the trust at your own discretion and buy or sell as you please.
Southern California’s Estate Planning Attorneys
Keep in mind that the laws of succession are different from state to state, so you will want to find a local estate attorney, especially if you have just moved to California from another state. Petrov Law Firm in San Diego can help. Give us a call at 619.344.0360 to start your estate plan or review and update an existing plan.Read More
Estate planning is something that always seems to get pushed off until tomorrow. However, you never know when tomorrow may be the day your family needs that estate plan in place. Therefore, we’ve come up with a list of three things you can do today to get your estate plan rolling.
#1 Take Inventory of Your Assets
Even if you don’t think there is enough to your estate to justify planning ahead, a tangible inventory will convince most people otherwise. Think about your home, property, vehicles, collectibles, and other personal possessions. Then add in bank accounts, investment or retirement accounts, and insurance policies. Do you own a business? You may realize you have a lot more to leave behind than you thought.
#2 Think of What Your Family Will Need
Are you the primary breadwinner in the household? Do you have minor children who will need a first car and tuition for college? How much does a proper funeral and burial cost in your area? Once you think about things your family will need when you are not there anymore, it becomes clear that you need to plan ahead and that there are specific events you should be planning for.
#3 Contact an Estate Planning Attorney in Your State
Estate planning law varies from state to state, so you need an attorney who is experienced in local law. In southern California, you can trust the experienced estate planning attorneys at Petrov Law Firm. Give us a call today at 619.344.0360 to schedule a consultation.Read More
Estate planning plays a crucial role in making sure that your beneficiaries get the assets you wish to transfer to them when you pass on. There are two vital factors that play a role in making sure that your wishes are carried out.
- Have an estate plan – You may assume that the state will distribute your assets to the family members you want them to go to, especially if you want to leave everything to a spouse or your children. However, things are not always so cut and dry, and without proper estate planning, your assets may be tied up in probate court for months or years, with much of the estate being drained in the process.
- Review your plan annually – At least once per year, you want to review your plan to ensure that your current wishes are documented properly. This is also essential when you experience a change in life such as a birth in the family, death of a beneficiary, divorce, new assets, loss of an asset, marriage, moving to a new state, etc.
When you take the time to have a plan in place, this shows loving concern for those who will have to deal with the court system in order to receive their inheritance from you.
California Estate Planning Attorneys in San Diego
Since estate planning laws vary from state to state, you want a local attorney to help. Petrov Law Firm can help your family to be prepared for the future. Call 619.344.0360 to begin or revise your estate plan now.Read More
If you already have an estate plan in place before becoming a first-time parent, you are ahead of many other families. However, adding a family member is a major life change that requires an update to your estate plan. Especially when you become a first-time parent, whether the child is newborn or adopted, you need to think about the following scenarios:
- Planning ahead for legal guardianship – As long as your child is still a minor, you need to have plans in place for legal guardianship should an untimely accident befall you and your mate simultaneously.
- Setting up a trust – If something does happen to both parents of a child, just having a will is not sufficient. You want a trust in place that will protect the estate until your child reaches legal age. Be sure to choose a trustworthy successor trustee who will protect the estate for your child.
- Review life insurance policies – You may decide that you now need to carry more life insurance. This will ensure that your mate and child do not experience hardship if something should happen to you, especially if you are the family’s primary breadwinner.
Updating Your California Estate Plan
Any major change in life circumstances should result in a review of your estate plan. If you are now living in southern California, Petrov Law Firm can help you to update your plan in accord with state regulations. Give us a call today at 619.344.0360 to get started with an experienced estate planning attorney.Read More
When it comes to estate planning, there are many dos and don’ts. Here are three of the don’ts so that you can avoid the mistakes that people commonly make with this essential preparation.
- Mistake 1: Doing it yourself – Estate planning should not be a DIY project. Since the laws vary from state to state, you need an estate planning attorney in your state to help you draft documents accurately.
- Mistake 2: Delaying – People in their 20s, 30s, or even 40s will often put off estate planning. Unfortunately, we always think we have more time to make these vital decisions, but this is not always the case. Plan now for the unexpected, and don’t leave the future of your family up to chance.
- Mistake 3: Not doing it at all – Some people think that estate planning is unnecessary just because they don’t have a lot of money. That actually makes leaving things to your family the right way even more essential. You also can use estate planning to make medical decisions in advance and to appoint someone to handle financial or medical matters for you if you ever become incapacitated. Estate planning isn’t all about money.
Southern California’s Estate Planning Attorneys
When it comes to planning for your California estate, you want the professionals at Petrov Law Firm in your corner. Give us a call today at 619.344.0360 to learn more about what our estate planning attorneys can do to help you protect your family.Read More
One thing you will come across when researching estate planning is the ability to use a living trust to control your assets while you are alive and then leave them to your family later. Is this really a beneficial method of estate planning? Yes! However, there are some misconceptions that cause people to shy away. Let’s debunk a few.
- Myth: It’s too expensive – While it is true that an attorney will charge more to draft a living trust than a standard will, the savings will come for your family. Rapid transfer of assets without the costs of probate court makes an initial fee more than worth it.
- Myth: My estate isn’t large enough – If your estate isn’t huge, that is all the more reason to leave it all to your family and not to the court system. Probate court will absorb a larger percentage of a smaller estate, and it will waste valuable time.
- Myth: I will lose control of my assets – Not with a living or revocable trust. You are free to do whatever you want with your things while you are still alive. An irrevocable trust is a different story, but the tax advantages are beneficial if you do have an extremely large estate.
Preparing an Effective Estate Plan in Southern California
Petrov Law Firm has the estate planning attorneys to help you prepare for the future of your loved ones. Let us assist you in finding the most efficient way to leave behind an estate of any size. Call 619.344.0360 to get started today.Read More