California Estate Planning
What is Estate Planning?
California estate planning is the process of considering all alternatives regarding:
- How to avoid probate.
- How your assets will be managed for your benefit if you are unable to do so.
- When certain assets will be transferred to others, either during your lifetime, at your death, or sometime after your death.
- To whom those assets will pass.
- Establishing arrangements that will meet your objectives if something happens to you or those you care about.
Estate planning typically minimizes potential estate taxes and fees, establishes contingency plans regarding your healthcare treatment and management of finances if you become incapacitated, itemizes how you want your property distributed when you di, as well as provides for the care of your minor or disabled children. You ought to have an estate plan if:
- You are the parent of a minor or disabled child.
- You have property that you care about.
- You care about your health care treatment.
Estate Planning Considerations
A comprehensive estate plan is important to accomplish your estate planning goals. While considering you estate plan, ask yourself the following questions:
- What are my assets, and what is their approximate value?
- Who do I want to receive those assets and when?
- Who do I want to take responsibility for the care of my minor children if I become incapacitated or die?
- Who do I want to manage those assets if I cannot, either during my lifetime or after my death?
- If I cannot take care of myself, who do I want to make decisions on my behalf concerning my care and welfare?
If you own real property or your assets exceed $150,000 in gross value, your estate plan may also include a Revocable Living Trust. You may want to review our list of common terms used in wills and trusts in preparation of planning your estate.
- Before considering establishing a living trust or any other estate or financial planning document or service, consult with a lawyer or other financial advisor who is knowledgeable in estate planning and who is not trying to sell you a product which may be unnecessary.
- Always ask for time to consider and reflect upon your decision.Do not allow yourself to be pressured into purchasing any estate or financial planning product.
- Be wary of home solicitors who insist on receiving confidential and detailed information about your assets and finances.
- Report high-pressure tactics, misrepresentations or fraud to the police immediately.
- Know your cancellation rights. California law requires that sellers who come to your home to sell goods and services (not including insurance and annuities) that cost more than $25 must give you two copies of a notice of cancellation form to cancel your agreement. You, the buyer, may cancel this transaction at any time prior to midnight of the third business day after the date of the transaction.