Orlando Estate Planning Attorneys – Wills, Trusts, and Probate
Though none of us prefer to think about or speak of our final day, it will eventually arrive. Whether it comes after a long life or in an unexpected tragic event, it is critical to have a proper estate plan in place, prepared by an experienced Attorney.
Experienced Estate Planning Attorneys to help ensure your legacy and your final wishes are fulfilled
An Estate Plan is a set of legal documents that manages and directs the distribution of assets of an Estate, during a person’s life and after an individual’s death. Although many of these documents can be found on the internet, it is not guaranteed that these documents will be properly set up and legal when the assets of the estate are administered. It is important to work with an experienced and knowledgeable Attorney to ensure the documents are prepared properly and the assets from your estate are distributed to the individuals of your choice.
Experienced Orlando Attorneys to help you set up Wills, Trusts, and other Estate Planning Needs.
All Estate Plans consists of six basic documents. Three documents deal with your person, the other three documents deal with your property. The first three documents dealing with your person will name trusted individuals designated to make decisions on your behalf when you are unable to make them for yourself. These three documents are:
- Preneed Guardian: a trusted individual whom you authorize to provide financial and medical care if you become incapacitated, should a guardianship be necessary.
- Living Will: a document that provides instructions about your wishes to your family concerning medical care, life prolonging machines, and decisions in the event you are at end of life.
- Health Care Surrogate: a trusted individual whom you authorize to make medical decisions if you are unable to.
The three documents regarding your property are designed to designate trusted individuals to make decisions about your assets when you are not able to:
- The Will: a document that provides instructions about the distribution of the assets in your Estate to the Courts and your family in the event of your death.
- Durable power of Attorney: a trusted individual whom has the authority to sign legal documents and complete financial transactions
- Living Trust: An Agreement set up with financial assets from an individual during their life to provide financial provision for themselves and family members when they are gone. With a living trust, the Probate process can usually be avoided.
Set up a Living Will with an Experienced Estate Planning Attorney to ensure your wishes are fulfilled.
A will is a legal document that is used to give instructions to your heirs and the court where you want to have your personal, real and other property allocated as well as how to pay liabilities after your death. It can also be used to give instructions as to how you want your children to be cared for. There are two types of Wills:
- Pour over Will: Used in conjunction with a Trust. In the event of your death, your assets captured by the will be poured over into the trust for the assets to be managed in accordance to the Trust words.
- General Will: can be applied across the board to any of your assets, once your estate goes into Probate, it allows for the distribution of the assets and fulfillment of your wishes
There are four basic types of Power of Attorney that an experienced Estate Planning Attorney can help you set up and provide counsel as to which type would best fit your situation
- General Power of Attorney: Used to give someone the Power of Attorney to act on your behalf in most situations.
- Special Power of Attorney: Used to give a person limited power of attorney, for a specific purpose, to act on your behalf.
- Springing Power of Attorney: Used to give a person power to act on your behalf only upon the event that you dictate.
- Durable Power of Attorney: Can be either one of three listed above and can survive an event of your incapacity.
All Powers of Attorney terminate upon the event of your death.
All proper Estate plans, whether simple or complex, will include a few designations of named individuals entrusted with carrying out the distribution of your assets, and critical healthcare decisions. These individuals to be named are known as: health care surrogate, personal representative or executor, and agent under the durable power of attorney. A Last Will and Testament, when prepared by an experienced estate planning attorney will include these individuals for the distribution of the assets of the estate and the care of the family and individuals it is designed to protect.
- Personal Representative or Executor of an Estate: An individual appointed by the Court to administer the estate of a deceased person.
Set up a Trust with an Experienced Attorney to have your Assets Managed to provide for the care of your family and to avoid the Probate process.
A trust can be set up as a part of your estate plan, by an experienced attorney, to provide for family members and children under a managed account structure. Assets belong to the trust and subject to rules and instructions of the trust dictated by the grantor. There are two main types of trusts that an experienced Trust Attorney can advise you on and set up to best fit your unique situation. Although a trust may cost a bit more upfront, it will save your family time and the costs of an Estate going into the probate courts. In the setup and preparation of a trust, trustees to manage the account and beneficiaries of the estate are named.
- Revocable or Living Trust: Assets and Provisions named in the trust can be altered or canceled depending on the grantor or the originator of the trust. Assets are transferred in the trust during your lifetime, and you are another person can serve as trustee.
- Irrevocable Trust: Assets and Provisions named in the trust cannot be modified, amended, or terminated without permission of the grantor’s named beneficiary or beneficiaries or court authority, with some exceptions.
The Attorneys and Staff at CPLS, P.A. are dedicated to providing their clients with competent and experienced Legal representation with integrity, and excellent client services.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I really need an Attorney even if I don’t have a lot of money?
You may think that you don’t have enough assets to necessitate having an estate plan, or you are not old enough. Though these are common misunderstandings, they are not necessarily true. Almost everyone needs an Estate plan. An estate plan prepared by an experienced attorney will ensure your choices and wishes are understood and honored both by the courts and your family and beneficiaries.
When is it essential to contact an Attorney?
There are multiple scenarios when an Attorney is needed; here are a few of the most common scenarios
You need to change your will since having a baby. You need to change your will because a family member has been disinherited. If you are going into a major surgery and no one is listed to make major medical decisions, an attorney can draft a health care surrogate. If you have a major life event such as having a baby or adopting a baby, you will need to update your will to provide direction to who will take care of the baby in the event of your death. After a death and before the distribution of assets, sometimes assets are taken from the decedent’s house by family members without having the legal authority to do so.
Why do I need a Last Will and Testament?
The Last Will and Testament will give you the opportunity to give your assets exactly to the people or charities that you want, not to who the law says who should inherit. You can name the trusted individual or financial institution you want to handle your affairs. You will want to ensure the people you choose will receive the care and provision that you have set aside. If these documents are not in place, your estate may not necessarily go to the people you intended, Assets from an Estate and medical decisions don’t automatically revert your spouse if the proper documents are not in place. You don’t want to leave these choices to the State of Florida. You may not want to leave your wealth to relatives. There is no requirement that you leave it to your relatives or family. However, there are safeguards in place for spouses and minor children who might be disinherited.