The term “estate” often conjures up images of British period dramas . . . skeet shooting, purebred hunting dogs, and “Downton Abbey.”
It doesn’t necessarily inspire images of your bungalow in the city, your minivan, or your modest (but growing) 401K.
Regardless of whether your economic situation more closely aligns with that of English aristocrats (or that of their staff), the reality is that, if you have a bank account, a car, a home, a retirement account, or any other assets you can give to another person (no matter what the value), then you too have an estate.
An estate plan allows you to decide who receives those assets, whether they be a house in the Hamptons, a piece of fine art, or a priceless spray-painted-macaroni holiday ornament made by your favorite preschooler.
Estate planning can also allow you to:
- Determine who can make health care decisions for you (or help manage your finances) if you become incapacitated.
- Name a preferred guardian for little ones
- Name a person of your choosing to retain control of any bequests to a minor or incapacitated child and provide instructions as to how that person can use the money on the child’s behalf. This way, you can be assured that the funds with be used as you direct (in some cases, even protecting an adult child from his or her own potential financial irresponsibility).
We encourage our estate planning clients to be empowered, even while going about the admittedly less-than-pleasant business of contemplating their own mortality.
We can help you be proactive about these decisions and take ownership of them, rather than having the State, a court, a financial institution, or a health care provider ultimately make them for you.
Questions about estate planning?
Whether your economic situation more closely aligns with that of English aristocrats (or that of their staff) . . . we can help.