You don’t need to get too old to make estate plan. As soon as you become an adult you should definitely consider creating an estate document. Even if you don’t have a family or you are not married, you can still create an estate plan document for yourself. Though estate planning boast of several benefits, many Americans die without planning one. Failure to plan your estate can hurt you, especially if you become incapacitated. With an estate plan you have the opportunity to have a say over your estate even when dead.
Estate planning tips for Millennial
Asset or possession transfer
A crucial aspect of estate planning is the disbursement of your estate. Through estate planning, you can ensure that your hard-earned possessions only go to those who matter most to you. This can be achieved by writing a Will. When most people in Brooklyn think about estate planning, they generally box the whole concept into a Will but this is not so. A Will can only allow you to transfer assets to your loved ones. You can also name a guardian for your minors if any, as well as an executor to carry out your instructions in the Will when you die.
A Will can be downloaded online but drafting it yourself cannot be compared to doing it with professional assistance from an estate planning attorney. This is because not all assets can be transferred according to a Will. Depending on the nature of your estate, your attorney will guide you on what assets to address in the document in order not to make probate complicated for your survivors. This leads us to the next item.
Stay clear of probate issues
Another crucial aspect of estate planning is addressing probate. Probate is the legal process by which your will is validated in court and the estate disbursed. It is most often complicated and lengthy in Brooklyn.
You have to consider how probate would be like given your estate and family situation. Is the estate large? Do you have properties in different states? Are there complex assets in your name? Are your family members estranged? If the answers are more yes’s that no’s, then you may consider avoiding probate altogether. This is because probate becomes even more problematic in the above situations.
An estate planning attorney from our firm can help you achieve this by establishing a trust on your behalf. Assets held in a trust will automatically pass to the named beneficiary without going through probate.
Plan for incapacity
In legal terms, incapacity is a situation when an individual can no longer be expected by law to make reasonable decisions for themselves. This is mostly due to mental illness like dementia, Alzheimer’s, or a terminal condition. Howbeit saddening to think about, this may happen in the future and your estate may suffer because you can no longer make important decisions, as you would have wanted to. However, our estate planning attorney can help you establish durable powers of attorney, a healthcare proxy and advance healthcare directive in order to appoint someone to act in your stead during incapacity. You can also lay down instructions on the kind of healthcare you would desire during a terminal condition.
Plan for tax
In New York, passing away with an estate worth $5.85 million will attract an estate tax of up to 16%. The amount must be paid to the state before your loved ones can inherit. If you prefer such a huge amount to go to a loved one instead, then it is important you get an experienced estate planning attorney to help you avoid the tax as provided by the law. This can be achieved through strategic periodical gifting, placing valuable assets in trusts, etc.
What you should watch out for
Currently, if your estate is above $5.85 million, the state of New York is entitled to about 5-16% of the excess. Imagine having that amount go to a loved instead. However, estate laws have provisions by which your estate planning attorney can help you limit your estate value below this threshold, therefore exempting your estate from the tax amount. By making annual gifting to your loved one during life or creating trusts for them, your estate planning attorney can make your estate become tax exempt.
Probate is another thing that can eat a considerable part of your estate, especially when it is a large one. Probate is a court process which oversees your estate disbursement after death. There are so many bills and court fees to pay. Our attorneys can help strategize to limit the amount of assets that would pass through probate. This we do by executing trusts.
There are certain laws that may not be compliant with your intentions. For example, you cannot name a non-New York resident as your personal representative. Doing so can void your document. We ensure that each document is compliant with state laws.
Contact an estate planning lawyer
If you wish to get in touch with seasoned estate planning lawyer near you, simply call our office today to speak with an estate lawyer.