When you hear “estate planning” what’s the first thing that comes to mind? For most of us, we may be left behind by the dispersal of physical assets such as homes or cars. While this already applies, estate planning in general embodies much more than that. It also specifies how a person’s assets will be preserved, managed, and distributed after their death if they are diluted.
Planning is everything and this includes discussing what happens as we age naturally. Who will take care of our affairs? What happens if I am unable to make sound decisions on my behalf? Where and how do I distribute my money and other assets? It’s never too early to start this process and start answering these questions.
What is the purpose of a will and why is it important?
A will is a living document that clearly lists all assets and debts associated with a particular person. This document is not only a necessity to ensure that every wish is respected after a person’s death – it ensures that everything is divided and scattered as indicated. This can be limited to one person or several people such as a spouse, children, friends or a charity. A will is also in effect to appoint a legal guardian for the care of minors, if applicable.
When should I create a will?
Anyone can create a will at any time and it is usually best to plan ahead and create one as soon as you feel the need or when you acquire important assets. Please note that you can update, change or cancel a Will at any time. Some major life events may also require changes in a will such as buying a home, getting married, or expanding your family with children. This is one of the best times to replace or make any additions.
How do I create a will?
Making a will is not difficult or expensive. It takes time and effort, but it’s not as daunting as many might paint it. Here are two different ways:
Write it yourself. A will is legally binding if you write and sign it. To make sure the document is legally binding, be sure to research the law in your specific state for details. It’s best to have a notary’s gift to watch to avoid any snags your enforcers might encounter in the future.
Use the expertise of legal counsel المستشار. You can always take advantage of this option to ensure that you do not miss any relevant details. A paralegal or attorney will be able to tackle things you might not have thought of. Often law firms can store these documents securely as well.
Once you have written the will, you should store it in a place where your loved ones and your loved ones can easily locate it. You can keep it at home with other important documents, preferably in a fireproof box or safety deposit box. The key here is to make sure it is accessible. If the location of the document changes due to transportation or an emergency – make sure that people who need to know where it is located can locate it without problems or hassles.
What is a power of attorney?
A power of attorney is an authorization granted by one person (the grantor or the principal) to another person (the proxy) to represent him in a lawsuit. In other words, it is the power given to act and take decisions on behalf of the agent if he becomes incapacitated.
There are four different types that we will explore.
power of attorney: In this scenario, the agent can perform almost every act in his capacity as the principal, such as opening bank accounts and managing personal finances. The power of attorney arrangement is no longer in effect when the principal becomes incapacitated, removes the power of attorney, or dies.
Permanent Power of Attorney: This specific arrangement designates another person to act on the principal’s behalf and includes a provision allowing the agent to maintain the power of attorney before, during, or after the principal becomes incapacitated.
Special or Limited Power of Attorney: In this case, the agent has specific powers that are limited to a particular region or class. An example of this is a power of attorney that gives a person the authority to sell their home or real estate.
Permanent Power of Attorney: In some states, a budding power of attorney is available and becomes effective when an unfortunate event occurs, resulting in the incapacitation of the principal.
What makes a power of attorney valid?
The grantor must be mentally competent when signing the power of attorney. The process of having witnesses sign the document also helps ensure that it is 100% authentic, there is no coercion, and everyone involved is qualified. Also, you need to certify their signatures, which further enhances credibility.
What is the process for completing power of attorney documents?
Obtaining the required forms: Either from a local attorney’s office or through any source that provides accurate legal documents. You can easily find many templates or templates online. You can modify these documents to meet your personal needs.
Complete the forms accurately: If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to consult an attorney before completing this Agreement. Be sure to review these documents with the appointed agent(s) to ensure that everything is concise and clear.
Notarize papers: With your agent, sign the papers in the presence of the notary. Local banks and law firms are usually available. Similar to wills, make copies of the agreement and keep them in safe places. You should store all of your estate planning documents in a central location.
While it’s never easy to discuss these topics as you age, they provide a different level of peace of mind. Making sure your loved ones are aware of your desires beforehand creates a smoother and less stressful process.