You’ve worked hard to build the life you cherish and a legacy you’re proud of, and you want to ensure that your loved ones are taken care of and that your wishes are honored once you are no longer here. Here at Vasiliou Law, we understand how important it is to create an estate plan that protects your family and preserves your legacy. Whether you need a will, a trust, a power of attorney, or any other estate planning document, we can help you craft a plan that suits your unique situation and needs. Contact a dedicated Queens estate planning lawyer from our firm today so we can help you secure your future and peace of mind.
Estate planning is essential for protecting your hard-earned assets and ensuring they’re distributed according to your wishes once you pass away. With so much line, you should only craft your estate plan with a competent Queens lawyer in your corner. Fortunately, you are in the right place.
There are several estate planning documents that work cohesively to create a well-rounded estate plan. Just some of the most important estate planning documents are as follows:
Many people think that all they need to do in terms of estate planning is draft their will. Although this is incorrect, wills are perhaps the most important estate planning document. In your will, you can choose beneficiaries (the people who you want to receive your assets upon your passing), appoint an executor (the person who will ensure your will is administered according to your wishes), and more. Your will can get as granular as you want; you can choose who will inherit certain financial assets, family heirlooms, and even outline last wishes for your burial/cremation. No one should ever die without first creating a will.
Trusts are a fantastic means to ensure your financial assets go where they’re intended upon your passing, and they can potentially save your family a great deal in the long run. A trust is a legal arrangement that allows a person to transfer their property to another person or entity, called a trustee, who holds and manages it for the benefit of one or more beneficiaries. Trusts are frequently used to avoid the probate process, reduce estate taxes, protect assets from creditors, and provide for minor or disabled beneficiaries.
There are several different types of trusts, and the one that’s right for you will depend on your specific circumstances and needs. Just some of the most common types of trusts, however, are revocable trusts, irrevocable trusts, special needs trusts, and pet trusts. If you’re considering creating a trust, however, you should only do so with a competent Queens estate planning lawyer in your corner. Vasiliou Law is here to help you.
Powers of Attorney
Powers of attorney are important estate planning documents used to ensure a person’s assets or medical care will be handled according to their wishes, should they ever become incapacitated. The person who creates the power of attorney is the principal, and the person who will enforce the power of attorney, or act on behalf of the principal, is known as the agent. The four most common types of powers of attorney are limited powers of attorney, general powers of attorney, durable powers of attorney, and springing powers of attorney. Each of these grants different levels of authority to the agent, so the type of power of attorney you wish to create will depend on your specific circumstances and needs. It is always advisable to speak with a knowledgeable estate planning lawyer when crafting your power of attorney.
If you are a parent of a child who is under the age of 18, you may wish to appoint one or more guardians to care for your child, should you ever pass away, become incapacitated, or otherwise unable to care for your child on your own. Without appointing a guardian, if you become incapacitated or pass away, the court will appoint whoever they believe is best fit to be your child’s guardian. Of course, this may differ significantly from the person you would have appointed, as you know your child’s best interests and who can meet those needs better than anybody.
You may also seek to become the legal guardian of an incapacitated or intellectually disabled adult, such as your parent, if the individual had not created a power of attorney during their lifetime. As the guardian of an adult, you will have the legal authority to manage the person’s finances, medical care, and other personal decisions. Some guardianships only grant authority for one of these things, while other guardianships grant broad authority to make all decisions on behalf of the incapacitated adult.
The bottom line is that without an estate plan, you leave your affairs in the hands of the courts and the government, which can result in delays, expenses, conflicts, and unwanted outcomes. By simply taking the necessary steps to craft your estate plan, you can avoid these problems and ensure that your assets are distributed according to your wishes, your minor children are cared for by someone you trust, your medical decisions are respected, and your taxes are minimized. An estate plan can also help you plan for unexpected events, such as incapacity or disability, and protect your assets from creditors or lawsuits. No matter what stage of life you are in, an estate plan can give you peace of mind and confidence that you have done everything you can to protect yourself and your loved ones. If you’re ready to create your estate plan, contact a seasoned Queens estate planning lawyer from Vasiliou Law today.