10 Tough Questions to Consider When Planning Your Estate: Part 2

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In our last post, we began discussing the top 10 tough questions to consider when planning your estate. We covered topics like what would happen to children if both parents were deceased, how to handle descendants who were not mentioned in your will, and how to plan for the care of any genetic material you may have on ice. If you missed Part 1, you can find it HERE.

Today, we’re going to finish up answering some of the main questions we hear concerning estate planning with questions 6-10.

6) Have you ever given people big gifts?

You may feel it’s out of order for a lawyer to ask whether or not you have given any substantial gifts, however, gifts in excess of$13,000 per person per year must be reported to the federal government and tax paid in return. Your lawyer will help report your past gifts and help you mitigate any tax consequences to ensure these matters are well taken care of and that everything is in proper legal order.

7) Who will be taking care of your pets?

We can’t forget about our 4-legged friends. If you have pets or animals with long life expectancies like horses, you might be required to put forward some type of trust fund to take care of them. Those who have several pets may want to consider contacting an organization to take care of them.

8) What are your wishes should you be placed on life support?

This question requires some deep soul searching compared to our earlier questions. You want to be able to come up with clear answers that will not be misconstrued. It is in your best interests to share with your healthcare provider information concerning the withdrawal of hydration and nutrition as well as the conditions surrounding your request to end life sustaining medical intervention. It is your healthcare provider who is responsible for carrying out these instructions, so it is advisable to share your wishes with them as well as with trusted family members and friends. It is always advised that such wishes be put in writing in a legally binding document to avoid any problems.

9) What are your passwords, security questions, and user names?

The digital life has changed life as we used to know it. Nowadays people are selling eBooks, online with most work been stored on hard drives and cloud storage. This important information is usually secured by specific usernames, passwords and security questions. The information must be shared with only one person you trust and one who must be approved by your lawyer.

10) Did you sign any community property agreements or enter into any postnuptial or prenuptial agreements?

These documents or agreements might seem irrelevant but may come into play especially if someone was unhappy with the agreement. Your estate lawyer will help legally terminate them if they are not relevant.

There are a number of intricate details that need to be addressed if you want to cover all of your bases when planning your estate. Be sure to ask any questions you may have even if you think it may seem silly or irrelevant. Your lawyer will answer all of your questions sufficiently so you can feel safe and secure in knowing that your wishes will be respected and followed to the letter after your passing.

If you are ready to put your estate plan into writing, give Godbe Law Group a call. We have years of experience in estate planning, trusts, and probate administration, so we understand what details need to be addressed as well as what you can expect to happen when it comes time to settle your estate. Your peace of mind is of the utmost importance to us and we will do everything we can to ensure that your wishes are well documented and legally sound.