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Estate Planning Archives

The importance of a business estate plan

While putting a business estate plan into place can provide entrepreneurs in Florida and around the country with peace of mind, there are also a number of tangible benefits that can be reaped from addressing succession issues in a timely manner. A business estate plan can help avoid costly disruptions following the death of a principal and provide managers with a strategy for future growth. For example, drafting a buy-sell agreement could prevent bitter disputes erupting between heirs and partners and keep unqualified or unsuitable individuals away from important decisions.

Umarried Florida couples need estate plans

Estate planning is important for everyone but especially so in the absence of children, who are natural heirs when a parent passes. For singles or couples without children, the absence of a plan can lead to unintended consequences and protracted litigation. A famous case is the estate of the musician Prince, who died without a will and whose estate is the subject of ongoing litigation that may last years.

Talking to adult children about estate planning

Florida parents should talk to their adult children about their estate plan. This can help their children understand the plan and can also help parents make sure they clear up any misunderstandings about the assets. In some case, this can mean significant savings for beneficiaries.

Tips for updating an estate plan

Since Congress passed a new tax law in December, Florida residents might want to review their estate plans. The estate tax exemption for couples has doubled to $22 million, so people who previously created estate plans with an aim of avoiding taxes may no longer need those provisions. However, there are other reasons that people of all income levels should review their estate plans regularly.

Reasons to include art in an estate plan

Florida residents who collect art generally do so because they enjoy it. They may also do so because they hope or expect that their collection will increase in value over time. In most cases, they plan on buying a piece and holding it until their death. However, art collectors may not necessarily account for their holdings when creating an estate plan.

Decluttering finances and estate planning

When planning for retirement in Florida, many people decide it is time to create an estate plan. Estate plans do not have to be messy and complicated. Just as taking the clutter out of a room can make it easier to access and enjoy, decluttering one's finances can make estate planning simpler and easier.

Digital assets and estate planning

Florida is one of the states that has adopted the Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act, Revised. This is part of an attempt to clarify who has rights to digital materials after a person's death. In the past, a fiduciary could go through a person's physical effects and decide what to do with them, but even if the fiduciary has been given passwords to the deceased's online accounts, it may still be against the website's terms of service to access the site.

The important of updating estate plans

Many people in Florida don't like thinking about estate planning and also believe that this topic is something that only needs consideration once. However, updates might be necessary as time passes and things change. Here is some advice from one financial planner about updating accounts.

When a will isn't enough

While a will may be an effective estate planning tool for Florida residents, it may not be the only document a person may need. For instance, a living will may provide direction as to what medical treatments a person wants if incapacitated. A healthcare power of attorney has the authority to make broader decisions about an individual's care in the event that he or she becomes incapacitated.

Avoiding probate with beneficiary designations

No matter how large or small a Florida estate may be, it may be a person's intent to avoid probate. There are several options to do this including adding a transfer on death (TOD) deed on property such as a home or car. It may also be possible to add a person as a beneficiary to investment or bank accounts. This may be ideal because typically a home or car would have to go through probate.

Consult Our Florida Lawyer for Veterans Aid & Attendance

Feel free to contact us and schedule an initial consultation where we can review your circumstances in an intimate setting and discuss how our Brevard County Elder lawyer can help you. Simply call Amy B. Van Fossen, P.A., locally at 321-426-1848 or toll free at 800-495-9153. We look forward to meeting you.

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