Estate Planning Attorney Elgin IL – Law Offices of Anthony R. Scifo – Call 847-628-8311
The services of an Estate Planning Attorney Elgin IL are very helpful throughout the estate planning procedure and afterwards for probate court. Your attorney understands the state and federal laws that are going to affect your estate.
Also referred to as probate attorneys, estate planning attorneys are licensed and experienced legal professionals with a detailed understanding of the laws that will govern the inventory, appraisal, distribution and taxation of your estate after you die.
Besides informing you regarding probate procedures, your Estate Planning Attorney Elgin IL can provide valuable assistance with tasks like:
-Creation of a valid will.
-Identifying your beneficiaries.
-Establishment of durable power of attorney or medical durable power of attorney.
-Identifying ways you might avoid or reduce estate taxes if possible.
-Optimizing ways you could avoid probate.
-Establishing any trusts that could offer protection of your assets. This can be for your benefit in the event you become incapacitated.
Estate Planning Attorney Elgin IL in some cases will charge a flat rate to draft legal documents like a will or a power of attorney. However, they might charge an hourly fee to help you, for instance, act upon your behalf in a dispute and to ensure that the terms of your will are carried out according to your instructions.
Additionally, an Estate Planning Attorney Elgin Il can provide guidance for someone with power of attorney for deceased individual’s estate throughout the probate process. In fact, an experienced estate planning lawyer can in many cases help you stay out of probate court. Although, that depends upon the kind of assets in the person’s estate and how they’re legally permitted to be transferred.
In cases where a beneficiary declares that she or he intends to contest a will and sue the deceased person’s estate from which you stand to benefit, it is in your interest to consult an Estate Planning Attorney Elgin IL right away.
Fundamentals of Estate Planning
When you consider your estate, it basically includes all of your possessions. This typically includes:
-Savings and checking accounts.
-Investments like stocks and bonds.
-Personal belongings and family heirlooms.
Regardless of how small or large it may be, practically everyone owns an estate — basically something they want to leave to their loved ones. Naturally, there are sentimental reasons why you would to want to pass some of your possessions to a loved one. There are also practical reasons, such as:
-Avoiding probate. When someone passes away without a valid will — a legal document that provides clear directions on how to distribute that person’s estate — determining the finances of the estate could be up to the court. Unfortunately, that is a process that can take a long time – years in some cases. A will significantly expedites the process.
-Possible tax benefits. After you die, your beneficiaries may need to pay taxes for your estate. Consult with an Estate Planning Attorney Elgin IL to learn more about the various scenarios that would be the best solution to your needs and could potentially lower the tax bill for your estate.
-Long-range plans. In the unfortunate event that an injury or illness leaves you incapacitated and unable to make sound decisions on your own, an Estate Planning Attorney Elgin IL can help you create a living will. It’s a legal document that states your wishes regarding medical care. It can also be used to assign someone to make medical decisions on your behalf. Estate planning puts you in control of major issues like where you want your assets, property and valuables items to go.
Checklist Items for Fundamental Estate Planning
Once you decide to begin estate planning, work from a basic checklist. It helps keep your legal documents organized and accessible when you need them. It can also be helpful to bring these documents when you meet with your Estate Planning Attorney Elgin IL:
-Start off by taking inventory. Gather your financial paperwork like banking and investment accounts, life insurance policies and any other notes on properties and valuable personal items you own. This will help you begin the planning process.
-Assess your needs. After completing a thorough inventory, you may find you need a few things you didn’t expect. For instance, perhaps you’d want additional life insurance coverages. Or, if you are the parent of children under age 18, you’ll want to consider potential guardianship.
-Draft a will. Here’s your opportunity to list precisely where you want your property and assets to go. You may choose to divide your assets among your spouse and children or make a donation to a charitable cause.
-Draft a living trust or a living will. You might want to take into account your long-range medical care in the event of injury or illness.
-Appoint an administrator. This is when you name a person you trust to carry out your instructions. You may keep the same individual as power of attorney who will help to manage your financial matters if you are unable do. Or, you could split the responsibilities among individuals you trust.
-Confirm your beneficiaries. Read through all of your updated financial documentation and review the beneficiary designations.
-Review with your Estate Planning Attorney Elgin IL. Because estate planning is so critical, it makes a lot sense for a legal professional to review your plan for you.
-Update your plan once per year. Store all your planning documents in a secure place. Once every year or if there are any significant life event changes, review them to verify the details are still what you want.
Estate planning is an important part of protecting your assets and assuring that distribution of them will go according to your wishes. Whether you’re preparing for retirement or planning for a growing household, it’s never too late for sound planning. Beginning the process with the help of an Estate Planning Attorney Elgin IL helps you get your estate in good order to help shield your loved ones and ensure your final instructions are followed accurately.
Medical Power of Attorney
Once of the certainties of life is that unexpected events and changes can happen to anyone at any time. Although no one can predict what may happen, there are steps you can take to prepare for the unforeseen.
A medical power of attorney names a representative who can make decisions regarding medical care for you if you are not able to do so. This can include matters such as whether to stop life support or to resuscitate.
Creating this form of agreement is relatively routine – ask your Estate Planning Attorney Elgin IL about medical power of attorney. Consider who you would like to take this important responsibility; select a person you know and trust. Naturally, honest and direct communication is critical when it comes to discussion such topics. Understandably, it can be difficult to think about a situation where you may not be able to care for yourself. However, addressing these matters early will ensure compliance with your wishes.
Consult with an Estate Planning Attorney Elgin IL today at 847-628-8311.
Then, your lawyer can draft the paperwork or you could even do so yourself. After your medical power of attorney is set, keep it in a secure location with your other documents.