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How to Avoid Costly Estate Planning Mistakes

Nov. 13, 2013

Estate planning is serious business. When writing a will or trust, one wrong word may change the entire intent of the document. It pays to hire an experienced, qualified estate planning attorney to draft your estate planning documents.

Estate planning attorneys have been educated and trained to draft wills and other estate planning documents in accordance with a particular state’s laws. Each state has laws that are very specific about what can and cannot be in a will, trust, or medical or financial power of attorney. The laws are also specific about who can and cannot serve as a trustee, health care surrogate, personal representative or attorney. There are certain formalities that must be observed when signing a will, trust, or medical or financial power of attorney. In order for the probate process to be smooth, a will must meet the state’s specific legal drafting requirements and an estate planning attorney is trained to ensure this happens.

The majority of people who have an attorney create a will, a living trust or another estate planning document does so for non-tax reasons. Understanding inheritance taxes, gift taxes and estate taxes is extremely important in planning an estate. Both federal and state estate taxes are quite complex and can be very confusing to the non-professional. However, an estate planning attorney understands both federal and state estate tax laws and will devise an effective plan to deal with high net worth taxes and protect your assets.

One common misconception concerning estate planning attorneys is that they only draft legal documents for asset distribution. This is not true for estate planning attorneys assists clients in drafting powers of attorney, medical care wishes and also burial wishes, as well.

When one owns a business it can be quite complex to distribute business assets or transfer ownership once the owner is deceased. To do so requires specific paperwork. An estate planning attorney will have the necessary paperwork on file and will assist the family in making a smooth business transition.

A comprehensive estate plan is one of the best gifts you can give to your loved ones. An experienced Connecticut estate planning attorney will work closely with accountants, financial advisors, insurance agents, stock brokers and appraisers to ensure that every detail of your estate planning is fully addressed.