Arizona Estate Planning Guide
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Estate planning will save your loved ones and heirs a lot of frustration and money. To make sure your loved ones are protected we hope to help with this Arizona Estate Planning Guide. A lot of people doesn't even know where to start when they think about their estate planning. Some are afraid of attorneys and we do recognize that. It can be intimidating to talk to a lawyer for the first time.
Do you have a Will? About 60% of Americans do not have a will, also know as a Last Will and Testament, or even any type or Estate Planning. It is an uncomfortable topic to talk about, but if you do not have an estate plan, you are putting your loved ones at risk.
Get Your Documents In Order
The last thing you want is your family searching high and low for important documents. Having all your documents updated and organized in one place is the goal of estate planning.
First is an up-to-date Will. In your Will, you outline how you will distribute your assets. You also name an executor who will oversee the distribution of the assets.
If you have children who are minors, you will also need to name a guardian for them should something happen to you and your partner.
A Living Trust
You might consider having an estate planning attorney help you create a Living Trust. A Trust eliminates the time-consuming process of going to the Probate process in Arizona.
Instead, your assets are put in trust and they will follow the guidelines of the Trust. A lot people may think a Trust is expensive or difficult to maintain, it is actually the opposite. A Trust is similar in price to a Will and it can save you a lot of money by avoiding Probate.
In some circumstances, a trust is essential. If you are a parent of minors or children with disabilities and want someone to manage your money for them, you should consider a trust. Trusts can also help also make sure a disable person don't lose their government benefits.
Health Care Directives
A health care directive includes a living will and a power of attorney for health care. Your living will outlines your wishes for your health care should you become incapacitated.
Naming a power of attorney for health care identifies who you wish to make decisions about your health on your behalf.
Financial Power of Attorney
A financial power of attorney is the person who will look after your finances and property if you are incapacitated. This is an important step. Without a power of attorney, you have far less control over what happens with your finances if you can't look after them yourself.
Getting your accounts in order is often overlooked. Retirement accounts and insurance policies that might have been set up years, or even decades ago, need to be reviewed to ensure the right beneficiaries are in place.
Make a list of all the accounts you have in your name. Close or merge the ones you can to simplify everything. Here is a list to check over:
- 401(K) accounts
- life insurance policies
- long-term care insurance policies
- bank and brokerage accounts
- all auto-pay accounts
- stocks, bonds or money in mutual funds
- safe-deposit boxes
- pension documents
- annuity contracts
You should also review any accounts and subscriptions you have and close those you do not need. Make sure all the relevant details and passwords are available for your power of attorney or executors.
Create Your Estate Plan
The final step of estate planning is to put it all together, we hope our Arizona Estate Planning Guide can help. Get your documents and accounts in order and share with the people that you want to make decisions for you.
Share the location and access with the relevant family members, and you are ready to go. It is always wise to seek professional help when estate planning in Arizona to make sure your affairs are in order. You can get help from the best estate planning attorney in Chandler, Arizona Today.
Please call (480) 565-8020 or click here to schedule your free estate planning consultation. The Citadel Law Firm estate planning attorneys in Chandler will be pleased to help.