What Are the Main Duties of an Estate Planning Lawyer?
An estate planning lawyer is an individual that is primarily responsible for ensuring that there is proper management and distribution of assets after the death of the owner. Estate planning lawyers help clients to draft and implement the necessary legal documents such as wills and trusts.
They, therefore, need to possess a thorough understanding of the state and federal laws. These laws will affect the way your estate and properties are valued, taxed, dispersed, and inventoried after you pass on.
Having a good relationship with your attorney is also important and so it is best to make sure it’s an estate attorney that is near you. Some duties that can be allocated to estate lawyers include:
Creating a will and testament
Estate planning laws help to craft your living will and your final will. A living will contains the instructions you would like to be followed if you are medically incapacitated. It is a medical power of attorney. A final will is a document containing instructions to be followed for distributing your assets after death. When creating your will, the attorney will help you to pick out the beneficiaries after death.
Attorneys also help to ensure that the requirements in the will are followed according to plan. There are instances where certain beneficiaries would like to contest a will and may try to do so by using the estate. The estate attorney will prevent such cases from dragging out for too long and draining the estate finances.
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Help to work through avoiding probate processes
When your assets are designated properly, there is usually no need for probate. Probate is the court process that transfers the estate that belonged to the deceased to the beneficiaries and heirs stated in the trust or will. No one likes the long probate process that takes up to two years and tons of money.
It is also very public and leaves the participants at a vulnerable place as anyone can go to the courthouse and obtain the documents of the will and testament. To avoid probate, acquire an estate planning attorney and ensure the proper designation of properties. Other factors such as the type of property and how they are legally allowed to be transferred can also affect this. The attorney will help the heirs to go through the process and adhere to the necessary litigations.
Developing an estate plan
Estate attorneys can help develop the estate plan or change it with any increasing advancements or changes to the law. Having someone around with knowledge of business-related issues such as property laws, investment, and insurance, organization and entities will come in handy. Understanding family law will also help in the allocation of beneficiaries.
Some tasks may be behind the scenes such as meeting with clients’ accountants and insurance agents, looking through property records, aligning objectives and wishes of the estate plans to the end goal of the client, and occasionally creating, changing, or terminating business entities.
Updates to an estate plan can also be done in the event of things such as divorce, marriage, childbirth or child loss, and moving countries or states. It is best to update your estate plan regularly and having a good estate attorney near you will make it easy. In the middle of changing diapers and moving states, your estate plan is the last thing you are worried about, so having an estate planning lawyer will put your mind at ease and keep your estate up to date.
There is nothing that offers more peace than having the future of the people and the things you love secured. What better way than to have your assets benefit and enable the generations and legacies to come after you?