As any California resident can tell you, it is never easy to deal with the emotional and legal aftermath of a loved one's death. You may gain an inheritance after your parents pass on, which first goes through the probate process. You may be glad to receive cherished heirlooms that belonged to your parents and grandparents, as well as clothing, jewelry, vehicles and other possessions. These items may hold happy memories for you, regardless of their financial value. However, you might not want everything that has been passed down to you from your parents, but it could seem disrespectful simply to give or throw these things away.
After going through the trouble of getting all your wishes down on paper, it's important to store your will in a place that is both accessible and safe. How can you ensure that your will doesn't end up in the wrong hands or lost?
If you and your spouse or partner recently welcomed a new child into your California household, likely the last thing on your mind is estate planning. Nevertheless, you should not overlook this very important aspect of new parenthood.
If an unforeseen accident takes your life, your estate should be left to your family to settle. However, this process may not be as clear for blended families.
For most people across California, one of their main objectives when working on their estate plans involves figuring out how to leave as much of the wealth they have amassed behind for their loved ones as possible. At the Law Office of Stephen W. Penn and Associates, we understand that there are several different steps you can take to accomplish this, one of which involves reducing the amount of tax assessed against your estate after your passing.
As a reasonably well-to-do Californian, you likely want to pass your estate down through your family in the most advantageous ways possible. If you have not yet considered one or more generation-skipping trusts as vehicles by which to do this, you may wish to educate yourself on the advantages this type of trust offers.
Divorce turns your life upside down; you go from sharing your life with your spouse and family to time on your own. The shift influences every aspect of your personal life, including your future and what happens to your assets after you pass.
When you set about instructing your attorney on how to draft your California last will and testament, you must possess the necessary testamentary capacity to do so. The word testamentary relates to anything having to do with a will. Therefore, as explained by the Orange County Bar Association, testamentary capacity means the mental capacity you need to have in order to make a valid will.
If you have a disability, you know that it is important to have numerous benefits and government programs available to you, especially Medicaid. However, as you may also know, having significant assets may cut off your eligibility for Medicaid and other programs and benefits. What can you and other Californians do to stay eligible for Medicaid without losing your assets?
If you are a reasonably well-to-do Californian who has already done some estate planning, you likely know that the types of trusts you can incorporate into your estate plan are almost limitless. Regardless of their specific type, however, all of them fall into the same two categories: revocable and irrevocable. You can alter any of the provisions of your revocable trusts, or even revoke them, any time you wish after originally establishing them. Once you establish an irrevocable trust, however, you cannot make any changes to it in the future.