No one knows when their time will come, but it’s important to be prepared for the unexpected. When it comes to estate planning, there are a few key factors you’ll need to consider in order to make sure your assets are distributed according to your wishes.
Here are some of the most important factors Arizona residents should keep in mind.
1. Health Care directives
Also known as a living will, a health care directive is a legal document that outlines your wishes for medical treatment in the event that you are unable to communicate them yourself. This can be an important factor to consider if you have specific preferences about your care or if you want to avoid any life-sustaining measures being taken on your behalf.
2. Durable Power of Attorney
A durable power of attorney is a legal document that gives someone else the authority to make financial and legal decisions on your behalf in the event that you are unable to do so yourself. This can be an important factor to consider if you have complex financial affairs or if you want to ensure that your affairs are handled in a certain way if you become incapacitated.
3. Beneficiary designations
When you open a bank account, investment account, or insurance policy, you will typically be asked to designate a beneficiary. This is the person who will receive the assets in these accounts in the event of your death. It’s important to keep your beneficiary designations up to date, as they will take precedence over any other instructions you leave in your will.
A will is a legal document that outlines your wishes for the distribution of your assets after your death. While it’s not required to have a will in Arizona, it can be a good idea to have one in order to make sure your assets are distributed according to your wishes.
A trust is a legal arrangement in which someone holds property or assets on behalf of another person. Trusts can be used for a variety of purposes, such as avoiding probate, minimizing taxes, and protecting assets from creditors.
6. Tax considerations
There are a number of tax considerations that need to be taken into account when planning your estate. This can include things like the federal estate tax, state inheritance taxes, and gift taxes.
7. Family dynamics
When it comes to estate planning, it’s important to take into account any family dynamics that might come into play. This can include things like second marriages, blended families, and children from previous relationships.
8. Business interests
If you own a business, there are a number of factors to consider in terms of estate planning. This can include things like buy-sell agreements, succession planning, and employee stock ownership plans.
9. Charitable giving
One of the most important estate planning factors to consider is how you want to handle charitable giving. This can include things like setting up a charitable trust or making a bequest in your will.
10. Special needs planning
If you have a family member with special needs, there are a number of factors to consider in terms of estate planning. This can include things like setting up a special needs trust or arranging for a guardianship.
If you’re an Arizona resident, it’s important to stay up-to-date on the latest changes in estate planning law. Here are some of the most important factors you should keep in mind when creating or updating your will. Of course, this is just a general overview – for specific advice tailored to your unique situation, please don’t hesitate to call us today. We would be happy to help!
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Probate law is a complex area of the legal profession that can be difficult to understand. At GillespieShields, our probate & estate planning attorneys have extensive experience in estate planning and will work with you towards an amicable resolution. 27 years of experience in estate planning and probate law means that our attorneys have helped many families navigate the legal system without any problems. We work with clients to find solutions for their reasonable goals, paying close attention along the way so they can feel confident about what’s happening legally throughout all stages of the process! Estate planning can seem like an overwhelming task, but it doesn’t have to be. With just a little time and effort you will find yourself prepared for anything that may come up! The best part about working together? All of our estate plans are customized with love by our talented team of lawyers! During our private, one-on-one consultation, we’ll take the necessary time to answer any and all of your questions surrounding Arizona’s estate laws, your family’s unique situation, and how you can preserve your wealth for the next generation. Contact us today for your consultation!
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