Fremont wills and trusts lawyerWhile both men and women are encouraged to have an estate plan in place, the two often have distinctly different needs. Much of this is due to life expectancy, but there are several other factors, such as limited work history, that may impact a woman’s financial portfolio or estate. Learn more about the unique estate planning needs of women, and discover how an experienced wills and trusts lawyer can help with your estate planning needs.

Why Women’s Estate Planning Needs Are Unique

Although women of today are the primary breadwinners about as often as men are, things were not always this way. Instead, women of the past usually stayed home and cared for their children, once they were born, and those that did work may not have received fair pay or benefits. Most also experienced a disruption in their work history during their childbearing years, which may have reduced their nest egg (if they even managed to save for one).

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California wills and trusts lawyerEstate planning is a complex legal process, and it requires some specific knowledge on the various methods and strategies. For example, one should know the difference between a will and a living trust, and how those differences may impact their heirs. Learn more, including where you can find assistance with your estate planning needs, with help from the following.

What is a Will?

In the loosest of terms, wills are legal documents that allow you to state how your assets and possessions are to be distributed. They can also name a legal guardian for any minor children. More specifically, however, wills are revocable and amendable documents that you control until the time of your death. It can be updated, altered, or changed to accommodate changing situations, such as the death of an heir or divorce. Keep in mind, however, that there are some major limitations in a will – particularly when it comes to the amount of control you have over your estate after your death – and the tax burden for heirs may be higher for larger estates.

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Fremont wills and trusts attorney millennium estate planningAbout half of all Americans do have a will, trust, or other estate planning documents completed. Unfortunately, that means another half do not have such documents in place. For these individuals, end-of-life decisions may come at the hospital, while they and their families are stressed and concerned. Sadly, this last-minute estate planning is often done with the aid of a nurse or other hospital professional who may lack the time or the knowledge to answer questions about the consequences of specific decisions. Enter the online chat bot, Emily.

Designed to help families and grantors through their end-of-life decisions, Emily is aimed at helping individuals in the 25- to 45-year-old age group. She encourages them to think about estate planning early. If a family is faced with difficult decisions at the last minute, she can also give them direction and insight regarding the different estate planning decisions that need to be made. Could she be the answer to improving the estate planning statistics in America? Perhaps, but the following explains why an experienced Fremont wills and trusts attorney may still be needed.

What Emily Can Do for Your Family

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Fremont wills and trusts attorneyMany reasons and situations require an update to your estate plan. Divorce just so happens to be one of the more common and potentially catastrophic situations. Unfortunately, it is also easy to overlook or forget. There are many loose ends to tie up once the divorce process is complete, and with more to manage, estate planning can easily slip through the cracks. Unfortunately, if something does happen to you before you have made changes to your estate plan, assets may not go to the people and places you had hoped. Do not let this happen to you. Learn what and when you should update in an estate plan after divorce.

Changing Your Beneficiaries

If you have a 401K, IRA, or another retirement plan, the beneficiary listed on your policy should be checked upon completion of the divorce. Of course, you may have to split some of your savings, but the remaining amount should go to you. If you do not want the remainder to go to your spouse upon your passing, and they are listed as the current beneficiary, it is important that you change this in your policy. Alternatively, if you wish your spouse to be listed as a trust for your children, ensure the policy and your other estate planning documents reflect this desire.

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Fremont wills and trusts lawyerEstate planning can be a complex matter, with state and federal laws to consider, but the initial steps do not have to be complicated. In fact, almost anyone can complete an effective estate plan with the right mindset and good advice. Learn more about these initial steps, and where you can find help, with the following information on effective estate planning in Fremont, California.

Know What You Own

From your beloved baseball card collection to real estate and the remainder of your retirement plan, it is crucial that you know what you own before you start the estate planning process. Start by gathering detailed documents on financial accounts (i.e. bank accounts, savings bonds, retirement accounts, etc.), real estate, vehicles, and other large or monetary items. Then make a list of family heirlooms and assets that may hold value. If necessary, have items appraised so that you know how much you are leaving to each of your heirs.

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Willett Law Firm

39300 Civic Center Drive, Suite 310
Fremont, CA 94538

Phone: 510-791-2244

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