Newman Law Group

March 2017 Archives

Asset protection looms as a major goal of estate planning

In California and throughout the country, estate planning is a process of preparing for future eventualities in a way that protects one's family and dearest friends from inconvenience and even loss of one's assets. The use of various trusts, a will, power of attorney and health care directives form the core of asset protection. By being able to designate the preferred family and friends for asset inheritance and those best qualified to manage the necessary procedures on one's behalf, the individual is able also to assure that his/her wishes will be followed.

Estate planning uses portability to remove federal estate tax

One important fact about federal estate taxes in California and nationwide is that a decedent has a $5.45 million gift and estate tax exemption at death. This generally excludes those in the middle class of the economy from incurring a federal estate tax, and generally eliminates the issue from their estate planning considerations. However, more and more people are facing the potential of being wealthy enough at death to want to plan correctly for the possibility of a federal estate tax at death.

Wills may be constructed to fit many familial situations

The prospect of a married couple dying simultaneously or near to each other, such as in an accident, is slim but it does happen. An estate planning attorney in California or elsewhere will consider that prospect when making mutual wills for a couple. The provision becomes important especially where there are young children to be considered.

Trusts can be beneficial way to transfer assets

Estate planning is often assumed to be something that only wealthy individuals need to do. However, this assumption is simply not true. For some California families, estate planning can be as simple as creating a will; for others, trusts are the preferred method when it comes to how to transfer assets.

Preparing ahead of time for asset distribution in California

Many people in California avoid the topic of their own mortality. Others view death as an inevitable part of life, and therefore want to be as prepared as possible. Especially if someone plans to pass on a family business, or wishes certain items of sentimental value to be given to a particular loved one or friend, it may be wise to consider estate planning as a valuable tool for documenting one's wishes regarding future asset distribution.

Who receives an inheritance without a will?

It seems as if every family has at least one of those relatives with whom no one wants to associate. For the most part, the majority of California residents are free to maintain relationships with only those friends and relatives they like. However, in some cases, it is possible that these same relatives with whom the individual does not wish to associate could be the very ones who will receive an inheritance upon the individual's death due to that individual's lack of estate planning.

Power of attorney keeps financial affairs in order

While most individuals would like to think that nothing will ever happen, it is a fact of life that, at some point in time, something will happen. For one reason or another, the individual will be unable to take care of his or her own affairs and will need someone to step in. For those who have planned ahead and established a power of attorney, this process is relatively easy. However, for those who have not, it will be necessary to go through the California court system to have someone appointed to take care of things.

Family dynamics a consideration in deciding to transfer assets

Many California residents recognize the need for estate planning. For most, the need to protect loved ones and minimize estate taxes are the driving force behind such planning. However, for some families, there are other factors which can have a tremendous effect upon how and when one desires to transfer assets.

The extensive benefits of estate planning in California

Planning for the future is important for everyone, regardless of income level or the size of one's estate. Many people neglect to take formal estate planning steps because they believe that they do not need it, but in reality, it is a necessity in order to protect loved ones from complications and disputes in the future. In California and elsewhere, the beginning of the year is a beneficial time to carefully review estate planning documents or start the planning process. 

Prince exhibits what not to do in protecting assets

There are many things in life that the average person in California does not want to do; however, it is important that some of these things are addressed. For instance, many do not want to pay bills or taxes, but if these items are not paid there could be serious financial repercussions. Likewise, if one does not plan for the end of life and the best method for protecting assets, there could also be serious financial repercussions.

Estate planning experts look for changes with new administration

Perhaps the only thing that is certain is that the political landscape throughout California and the United States as a whole is changing. Each political party has stated their case, and the voters have made a decision. Along with the many other changes that will gradually come in to play, many estate planning experts are expecting there to be some changes in the estate planning process.

Special needs trust one way to transfer assets

Parents often want to make sure that their children and loved ones are taken care of, even after the parents' death. For this reason, many California parents have life insurance policies, investment accounts, wills and even trusts in place to make sure that the children have what they need. It is important that each individual thinks through and act upon the best way to transfer assets so that the needs of the family are met and the inheritance is maximized.

Digital accounts now a part of estate administration process

The majority of California residents recognize the need for some form of estate planning. For some, this involves creating a will; for others, it involves creating a trust and power of attorney to go along with the will. However, one aspect of everyday life that is generally forgotten about during the estate planning process involves digital assets. For things to run smoothly, it is vital that this aspect be accounted for in order to aid in the estate administration process.