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Protect you ASSets

February 20th, 2009 at 05:40 am

Estate planning is important to ensure all your wishes and plans for the distribution of your assets are carried out in the event of your death. But it is also important for other reasons. What if you should become mentally incapacitated due to accident, stroke or dementia in the future? Imagine what a burden this would place on family members as they struggle to make decisions for you without your input.

Proper estate planning will include what to do in this possibility. You can have your wishes carried out even though you may be unable to tell your family what you want. Estate planning is the one sure way of making sure your goals for the distribution of all your assets are achieved in the way you wish.

Estate planning comprises a will - if you die intestate (without a will) then the laws of the land will govern what happens to all your assets. This means that if you wanted any part of your assets to go to another source apart from your family, it probably won’t happen. It also means that it will take a long time and probably cost a lot of money for lawyer’s fees, to get your estate settled. A trust may also be used as part of estate planning.

A Guide to Estate Planning

July 2nd, 2008 at 12:45 am

Planning for your estate ahead of time will enable your wishes to be carried out in a manner that is timely, easy to do and reduces debt to your heirs. A good estate plan will see to it that probate is minimised or avoided and tax liabilities deferred. It will have plans in place to protect your assets and plan ahead for illness or incapacity. Guardians and personal fiduciary representatives will be considered or chosen.

Succession strategies will be put into place for family businesses with the formation of family limited partnerships looked at. You may need to use a trust to distribute your assets to any children who are still minors. Assets will include real estate, stocks and shares, life insurance, personal property that is valuable such as art collections or jewellery and other things such as cash.

A good estate plan takes into consideration the fair market value of assets and their growth or liquidity. With the correct estate plan in place, you can rest assured that all your assets will be disposed of in a manner of your own choosing. This will save your children the burden of making decisions that you may not have wanted, and will certainly save them squabbling amongst themselves.