Your Estate Plan may consist of a Last Will and Testament, Trust, Power of Attorney and other important documents that need a tune-up from time to time. Not just because your life may have changed, but outside events can affect what’s in your estate plan as well. One recent outside event is the new tax reform that Congress passed at the end of December. Did the tax reform, or new estate tax limits affect or alter your estate plan?
It’s the beginning of the year and time to think about a resolution to re-evaluate your circumstances and any governing documents you may have regarding your estate plan. Life is constantly changing. You may need to make necessary adjustments.
Consider meeting with an experienced estate plan attorney. That attorney can help you re-examine your life’s changes and determine if a new and different strategy is in order to further protect your assets and your heirs.
Since your Estate Plan was formed, you should ask yourself several questions. Has your life or your needs changed? Are your beneficiary designations on your insurance policies still the same? What about your finances- have they increased due to an inheritance or the rise in the stock market? Have your finances nose-dived? What about your heirs or beneficiaries? Have their lives changed? Were there any marriages, births, deaths, divorces, or has anyone reached the age of an adult? Has anyone fallen on hard times, entered a rehabilitation program or had a life-altering occurrence?
Have you bought any property since your estate plan was formed? If you purchased a vacation home in another state, it’s imperative you speak to an real estate attorney, otherwise that home will go through ancillary probate proceedings.
If you have recently bought a new business, or sold your existing business or shares of your business, you will want to make sure that business and profits are also protected; you should contact an experienced business attorney with knowledge of estate planning and tax implications to ensure the best options for protecting those assets in your estate plan.
Even something as simple as moving can affect your life’s wishes. Has your executor, or someone who has your Power of Attorney moved out of state, or far away? Do you need to re-appoint another person? Do you have a personal representative who has the necessary documents to access your finances if you can’t? How protected are your accounts, especially online?
Has your health needs changed? Are you or your spouse facing a health issue? If so, you may want to think about moving assets into a trust or other avenues in which to protect them such as gift-giving.
Gantenbein Law Firm's Denver, Colorado attorneys are focused on achieving exceptional client representation. Our Wills, Trusts and Estate Planning attorneys and Probate attorneys have the knowledge and expertise of the changing laws and can draft sophisticated plans to help cover and protect your assets. Our experienced attorneys, including our tax lawyers, can review your estate plan, changes in your life, changes in the new tax reform and can modify your plan to best reflect your current goals and desires.
In addition to Estate Planning, Wills & Trusts, Probate, Tax and Real Estate Law, Gantenbein Law Firm's lawyers also practice Elder Law, Foreclosure Defense, Credit Repair, and Homeowner Association (HOA) disputes in Colorado. Gantenbein Law is located in Denver, Colorado.
For more information, visit www.gantenbeinlaw.com, or call 303-618-2122.