Estate Planning

So what exactly is estate planning? It is taking the time to consider how best to help ourselves while we are alive, and to arrange for what we leave behind to be properly taken care of according to our wishes.

Estate and asset protection planning provides solutions to the following types of concerns:

How will I avoid the cost and inconvenience of probate for my spouse and children?

For many clients, the best solution is a revocable trust, often referred to as a “living trust”.

If I can’t make legal, financial or healthcare decisions for myself, how can I be sure my wishes are carried out?

Again, a revocable trust may provide the answer. In addition, every client needs a durable power of attorney and a health care proxy appointing a trusted individual to make financial and health care decisions for you when you no longer can yourself.

How can I make sure my wealth and possessions end up in the right hands when I’m gone?

Wills and trusts are vehicles for passing on your assets to those you chose. Many clients are concerned about funds they leave to their children being at risk of their children’s creditors, spouses upon divorce, or simply bad decisions their children may make. For them, a family protection trust can provide the protection they seek. In addition, proper planning will prevent the payment of unavoidable estate taxes upon your death.

My spouse needs more care than I give. Will we lose everything to pay for care, or are there options?

Not if you plan properly, the earlier, the better. There are a number of planing options available to spouses of nursing home residents to protect their financial well-being while qualifying their ill spouse for MassHealth coverage of nursing home fees.

My child is disabled. How can I provide for his/her future?

We have helped many parents of children with special needs plan for their children through the creation of special needs trusts funded with life insurance.

What legacy will I leave?

Your greatest legacy of course is the children and grandchildren you raise, if any, and the memories you leave with your family, friends, and work colleagues. But support of charities and an estate plan that provides for your family and smoothly passes on what you leave behind will also contribute greatly to the legacy you leave and your family’s welfare for decades to come.

 

Contact Attorney Margot Birke for More Information

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