So what happens to all the assets and properties you've worked so hard all your life to get once you pass away? Preparing for one's death - whether or not it's untimely - involves determining who will inherit what once a person is deceased. This preparation is called estate planning. However, estate planning is done not only in anticipation for one's death but also in the event that he gets incapacitated.
Although those who believe they don't need estate planning because they don't own a lot of property anyway, there are still benefits when such planning is done. Here are some of them:
Peace of mind - Death will come to anyone. It's the only certain uncertainty. However, some people worry about death because they don't know what's going to happen to their property once he passes on. Will his loved ones inherit them? Doing estate planning gives one peace of mind, knowing that his property will go to his designated heirs. He can even specify in his will how much each heir will receive and even the mode by which the assets are to be given.
Providing for loved ones with special needs - Another worry for some is when they have relatives or family members who are either physically or mentally disabled. By having a will in place, one can be assured that those whom he loves with special needs will be provided with such needs after his death.
Help heirs with their inheritance - There may be heirs who are inexperienced when it comes to managing their inheritance. If such is the case, the inheritance may not last very long and might be spent on impractical things. By doing estate planning, a person can specify what the inexperienced heirs should do with the inherited assets to make sure they're used for important things like getting a good education, buying a nice house, or even making wise investments.
Protecting your children - Another advantage of estate planning is that a person can protect his children's inheritance in the event that his surviving spouse gets remarried with someone who has children. By having a carefully planned will, the children's inheritance is protected while the surviving spouse is still provided for. This eliminates the worry factor about children or stepchildren from a later marriage claiming part of the estate.
The 'no contest' provision - A 'no contest' provision is something stipulated in the will that assures that your wishes will be honored after your death. This provision discourages challenges to the estate plan you have in place.
Minimizing or avoiding estate taxes - Estate planning is more than just putting together a will. It is also about securing one's assets to make sure that the inheritors are provided for in the most tax-effective way. A well-drafted will or estate plan, when done with an expert estate planning lawyer, can minimize or even avoid income taxes, estate taxes, and capital gains taxes.
If you do estate planning, your heirs can enjoy all these benefits and more. Get an estate planning lawyer and have peace of mind that no matter what happens to you, your designated heirs will get their due share.
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Toby King is a legal consultant and associate, working for a prestigious law firm in Sydney. He provides expert advice on corporate and personal legal concerns like property settlements and financial and accounting services. If you're looking for an expert lawyer to help you out with your family estate planning, you can get help on family estate planning at ClinchLongLetherBarrow.
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