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Estate Planning Made Easy
Planning for your death may be something your find frightening. However, having the right plan in place is financially prudent and will ease the stress for your loved ones. Estate planning in Louisiana is unique because certain concepts such as forced heirship, usufructs, and the community property regime. You should have an experienced Louisiana estate planning attorney to ensure your last wishes are carried out.
The only way to truly ensure that your wishes at death are known and carried out is to have a will. Estate planning does not have to be complicated in order to be effective. If you own property, have children, recently married or divorced, or would like to make a specific bequest at your passing, then now is the time to prepare your will. Likewise, if you have an existing will but have not reviewed it in years, now is the time to make certain that your will fits your current needs and desires.
POWER OF ATTORNEY
In addition to drafting wills, we can help you draft a durable power of attorney. Powers of attorney can be general or specific and are designed to ensure the continued management of your affairs in the event that you become incapacitated during your life or in the event you know you will be absent for a specific transaction. A general power of attorney may confer full power to make financial decisions. A real estate power of attorney may grant an agent the ability to buy, sell, or lease immovable property. A medical power of attorney gives authority to another person to give consent to healthcare providers on your behalf if you are unable to do so. A living will specifies the type of medical care a person wishes to receive or not receive if one becomes incapacitated or seriously ill and unable to communicate.
Trusts are juridical entities that can have ownership of property. One benefit of trusts in estate planning is allowing money and other assets to grow tax free until disbursed to the beneficiaries. There are many types of trusts, but one of the most common is a testamentary trust which may be included in one’s will. These are sometimes beneficial when a person has significant assets or life insurance policy and/or they have minor children. The trust allows periodic disbursement rather than leaving it all at once and is beneficial to minor children as they will have a trustee to manage the assets for them. Special needs trusts are commonly used when an heir has a disability for which they receive public assistance. It can help ensure that the special needs beneficiary does not lose their benefits upon inheritance.
Another common trust is a living trust, which is put in place during one’s lifetime and serves as a way of giving part of an estate to a loved one prior to death while still maintaining control over the assets as the trustee. An act of donation is similarly used during one’s lifetime, but the property is wholly transferred and the donee can then do with it as he or she pleases.
The estate lawyers at Bowes, Petkovich & Palmer, LLC are well versed in estate planning and have drafted thousands of documents for hundreds of clients for over four decades throughout the New Orleans and surrounding areas. Call us today for a free consultation.
Common Estate Planning Instruments:
Last Will and Testament
Power of Attorney
Act of Donation
Forced Heirship and Collation
Bowes, Petkovich & Palmer, LLC
2550 Belle Chasse Highway
Gretna, LA 70053
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