Estate Planning Worksheet With A Pair of Glasses | What Is Estate Planning | The TGQ Law Firm

What Is Estate Planning?

Estate Planning | The TGQ Law Firm

Protect the ones you love by working with an estate planning attorney in Ann Arbor, MI. At The TGQ Law Firm, many of our clients procrastinate when getting their affairs in order because they see it as something you only need to do when you’re older. However, single indivuals and everyone with a spouse or child should consider planning their estates. But, what is estate planning?

As founder and president of The TGQ Law Firm, Terrence G. Quinn has served Ann Arbor residents for over a decade by providing them with a full suite of estate planning services, including creating wills and trusts. To maximize the preservation of his clients’ wealth, Mr. Quinn and his team also offer premium estate planning advice.

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What Is Estate Planning?

Estate planning comprises the creation of specialized legal documents, a series of legal procedures, and the provision of legal advice by a qualified attorney. Estate planning dictates what will happen to your assets if you become incapacitated or pass away. Without an estate plan, statutes and case law will determine where your assets go. In some cases, a person’s assets may even end up in the government’s hands.

Some of the documents a wills and trusts lawyer may draft for their clients include:

  • Revocable or irrevocable trusts
  • Wills, especially pour-over wills
  • Advance Health Care Directives (AHCD)
  • Health Insurance Portability and Authorization Act (HIPAA) authorizations
  • Powers of Attorney (POA)
  • Real property deeds

Why Do I Need To Plan For My Future Now?

Now that you know what estate planning is, you may wonder whether you need it now. Like so many other things in life, it’s better to have an estate plan and not need it than need it and not have it. You never know what the future might hold. Once you become mentally incapacitated or pass away, it’s too late to assign your loved ones or favorite organizations as your beneficiaries.

Some of the reasons you may need to plan for your future now include:

  • Marriage
  • Birth or adoption of a child
  • Scheduling of major surgery
  • Acquisition of new assets
  • Terminal medical diagnosis

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What Is a Will?

Most clients understand what preparing a will entails. However, only a few can formulate an answer when asked, ‘what is estate planning?’ However, people typically know that it has something to do with wills and trusts.

A will is a testamentary legal document that allows a testator to dictate who receives their assets upon death and appoint executors to carry out those wishes. Once the testator passes away the named executors remain legally bound to follow the instructions found in the will. In many cases, an attorney will draft a pour-over will to transfer assets into a trust when a trust is involved in the planning.

What Is a Trust?

A trust is a legal document that finalizes an arrangement between the trustor and any named trustees. Upon incapacitation or death, the trustee will hold, use, and distribute assets as stipulated in the trust document.

In many cases, clients possess both a will and trust. Some of the advantages of a trust over a will include:

  • Avoidance of probate for assets named in the trust
  • Faster distribution of assets
  • Fewer attorney fees and court costs
  • Distribution of assets over time instead of immediately

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How Can an Estate Planner Help Me?

A lot goes into estate planning – much more than simply drafting of wills and trusts. A qualified estate planning attorney can help you in several ways. For example, at The TGQ Law Firm, we help clients:

  • Minimize the tax burden on gifts, bequeathments, and other transfers
  • Decide what to do with bank accounts, life insurance, retirement accounts, and more
  • Provide for their dependents if they can no longer do it themselves
  • Choose high-quality trustees and executors
  • Make end-of-life decisions
  • Protect assets (such as real estate, business interests, etc.)

Ann Arbor Estate Planning Attorney | The TGQ Law Firm

You can get your affairs in order with the help of a reputable estate planning attorney in Ann Arbor, MI. At the TGQ Law Firm, we create comprehensive estate plans to make it clear where you would like your valuable assets to go. Contact us at (734) 707-3232 to sign up for a needs assessment or you can book your appointment online.

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Disclaimer: This article is not intended to be legal advice.  Everyone’s situation is different and legal advice is only properly given after having reviewed your specific situation.

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