Every family is unique, and the way that you want to craft your legacy is a personal decision. There is a lot to take into consideration, and the only logical way to go about it is to engage the services of an experienced and dedicated estate planning attorney. You have the vision, and your attorney has the expertise to make that vision a reality.
Though the details are not going to be the same for every estate plan, there are some basic core elements that are included in every modern holistic estate plan and we would like to highlight them here.
This is the element that is going to pop into the minds of most people first when they consider the subject of estate planning. Depending on the nature of your assets and exactly what you would like to achieve with your legacy you have a number of different options when it comes to arranging for the distribution of your resources after you pass away. Your estate planning attorney will carefully evaluate your situation and recommend the optimal combination.
There may well come a time when you become unable to make financial and medical decisions due to incapacity. Nobody wants to think that they will become incapacitated, but people are living into their mid to late 80s and beyond quite routinely these days and incapacitation is common among the oldest old. It is important to execute durable powers of attorney appointing individuals of your own choosing to make decisions in your behalf should the time come when you’re no longer able to render sound choices.
A Living Will
With a living will you make your wishes known regarding medical preferences such as whether or not you would want to be kept alive via the use of artificial life support systems should your condition be deemed irreversible by medical professionals. By executing this document you take a potentially excruciating decision out of the hands of your loved ones and eliminate the possibility of disagreements among family members as we saw with the case of Terri Schiavo a number of years ago.