Estate planning is many things. In order to present a solid definition of this particular type of planning, a Forbes article posed the question, “What Is Estate Planning?”
The article concludes that “Estate planning is the process of legally structuring the future disposition of current and projected assets.” The operative words in this definition of sorts are “structure” and “process.”
“Structure” is an essential component of your estate plan. Why? Because, much like a building, estate planning requires putting many diverse things into place to accomplish a goal. A building can be an office, or a home, or a retreat, depending on the pieces you choose and where you choose to put them. Consequently, your estate plan can structure your assets to protect them from creditors, to duck beneath a tax ceiling, and to protect your loved ones for years to come. In essence, like a good building, your estate plan can perform many functions.
Likewise, “process” is equally essential. Unlike a static building, your estate plan is constantly building, sometimes evolving, and sometimes outright changing course completely. In this light, estate planning is abstractly simple. Accordingly, you must keep your estate plan current with the many changes in your life, the lives of our loved ones and the plans you have made.
An estate plan generally consists of a Trust and Will (to dispose of your assets and provide for who manages your documents during incapacity), a Power of Attorney, an Advanced Health Care Direct (to nominate someone to make your medical decisions) and guardian nominations if you have minor children.
Reference: Forbes (November 4, 2013) “What Is Estate Planning?”
If you would like to create or update your estate plan, call our office today to schedule time for us to talk. Our office is located in Santa Ana, CA but we serve all of California including Irvine, Tustin, Newport Beach, and Anaheim.