What We Do
At its core, estate planning is about love. The purpose of estate planning is to maintain your control over your property while you are alive, take care of you and your loved ones in the event of incapacity, and pass your property to whom you want, when you want, and how you want. Fulfilling these purposes allows you to continue to express your love for others and to take care of them after you are no longer able to do so yourself.
Because estate planning so drastically affects those closest to you, it is imperative for you work with an estate planning attorney who takes the time to get to know you, your goals, concerns, and vision, who will listen to you and counsel with you to develop a comprehensive estate plan that is focused on you. Lastly, you want to work with an estate planning attorney who wants to continue to work with you and develop a relationship with you through the years, not an attorney who will never communicate with you after you establish your plan.
Who Should Have an Estate Plan?
Too many people think that an estate plan is only for the wealthy, but in reality, estate planning is for every husband, wife, mother, father, grandparent, business owner, or anyone else who has someone they care about, are concerned about providing for, or who seeks to make a difference in the lives of others after they are gone. Estate planning is not “death planning;” it is “life planning,” “family planning,” and “planning with love.” It is an essential and uplifting process that can strengthen family bonds even through the most difficult of times.
Legacy Planning and Purposeful Planning
Estate planning, while about love, does not always encapsulate your life story and family dynamic. To learn more about how values-centered planning can benefit you and your loved ones, visit our Purposeful Planning page.
What is estate planning?
Estate planning is how you can take care of your loved ones even after you are no longer able to do so. The three purposes of estate planning are: 1) Control your property while you are alive and well; 2) Provide for yourself and your loved ones if you become incapacitated/disabled; 3) Give what you have to whom you want, the way you want, when you want.
Estate planning addresses the consistent and hardest parts of life, which is when someone passes away. In my opinion, estate planning’s purpose is to help a family’s transition as they cope during such a difficult period in their lives. It is a gratifying and purpose-filled legal service.
Comprehensive estate planning takes the whole person into account. It involves selecting trusted individuals to carry out one’s wishes and drafting documents that carefully guide and protect future generations. Estate planning also goes beyond taxes, wealth, and medical decision making: Many people choose to include things like recorded oral histories and precious heirlooms in their plans. This makes estate planning not just about property, but about the legacy, values, and vision you want to pass along to future generations.
Do I need to do estate planning?
Every individual has different needs, and to receive a full appraisal of your needs for estate planning, I would advise you to schedule a complimentary initial meeting to discuss your situation.
Why do you do estate planning?
To provide a simple answer, family is incredibly important to me, and I believe that estate planning provides me with an opportunity to help and serve families. Families are central to so many people’s lives and society in general, and so estate planning is a fantastic opportunity for me to help those individuals who want to take care of their loved ones.
For additional thoughts, please read my bio.
What should I tell my children about my estate planning?
There is no cut-and-dry rule for what you should and shouldn’t tell your children about your estate planning, but it’s usually a good idea to err on the side of more information rather than less. It’s a good idea to tell your children the reasons behind your decisions, so they understand how your values translate into your plan. Sharing your perspective far in advance using important documents like your health care directives can also reduce stress on your family in a difficult moment down the road. It is also an excellent way to reduce (or even eliminate) family infighting that sometimes occurs after death if your children have heard directly from you about the reasons for your decisions.
Why does an 18-year old need an estate plan?
Even an 18-year-old has property, and that 18-year old probably cares who would get their property if they pass. Also, a good estate plan also has incapacity planning, which protects the 18-year-old in case of incapacity.
Estate Planning In Depth
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Join Brandon Rains and a group of like-minded clients and their successor trustees as Brandon reviews some of the responsibilities and duties of successor trustees. Being a trustee (and learning how to do it on the job) has to one of the hardest jobs out there, yet so many have to do exactly that. These […]Find out more »