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Estate Planning Essentials

No matter what your age or life stage, putting a comprehensive estate plan in place is the best way to maximize your hard-earned savings and protect the future of your loved ones.

If you have already begun the estate planning process, it’s important to remember that as you grow older and your retirement plans and financial situations change, you adhere to some of the following estate planning principles in order to ensure that your family, healthcare and personal assets are planned, protected and properly managed. 

Whether you plan on retiring 10 days, 10 months or 10+ years from now, or if you have already retired, the financial needs of your family and your plans for the future will evolve as time passes. 

Putting these 3 things in place now will ensure that your estate is protected and properly managed as time goes on and as life circumstances change.

 1.      Build Your Team:

The foundation of estate planning begins with a solid team.  Enlist the help of a knowledgeable estate planning attorney to guide you through all aspects of planning your estate.  This will ensure that proper consideration is given to your investments and that the required legal documentation is put in place to protect you during retirement and provide for your loved ones once you are gone.  Working with a Pittsburgh Estate Planning Attorney removes the guesswork and gives you peace of mind that everything is in order and properly managed from beginning to end.

 2.      Keep Your List of Beneficiaries Current:

It is well known that listing how you want your assets to be distributed to your desired beneficiaries when you die is an essential part of estate planning.  However, keeping the list of beneficiaries up to date with your wishes is sometimes neglected.  As life situations, family plans and personal relationships change, it’s important to revisit your retirement plan and insurance policy and update your beneficiaries accordingly.  With your estate planning team assembled, this process becomes straightforward and will help you to avoid costly inheritance and estate taxes.

 3.      Documentation Essentials:

Do you have a Will, a Living Will and a Power of Attorney?  These documents are essential for proper estate planning but understanding the difference and necessity for each can be intimidating. 

In brief,

  • Your Will documents how you want your assets to be distributed to your desired beneficiaries when you die.  It may also create a trust or designate a guardian for your minor children. 
  • Your Living Will is used to make known your wishes regarding life prolonging medical treatments.
  • Your Power of Attorney appoints one or more people to manage your legal, financial or healthcare-related affairs when you are unavailable or unable to do so.

Your estate planning attorney is there to guide you through the legal documentation process of estate planning and can answer or clarify any information that is unclear.

Wherever you are in life’s journey, taking the time to review and take action on these estate planning principles will ensure that your estate is protected and properly managed.

To discuss your specific needs and to find out how our estate planning attorneys in Pittsburgh can help you, please call us at Fingeret Law at 412.281.8222.

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