We all make mistakes, but some are more consequential than others. Mistakes surrounding the process of estate planning can be irreversible if you die before correcting them. That’s why it’s crucial to work with an experienced estate planning attorney who will supply you with the guidance and support you need. The first common mistake otherwise responsible people make regarding estate planning is to continue postponing it. The second is not choosing the right law firm to assist them.
How an Upright Estate Planning Law Firm Will Do to Keep You From Making Mistakes
Palmer & Slay, PLLC is an accomplished estate planning practice in Brandon, Mississippi. We have a well-earned reputation for providing skilled legal representation and personalized attention to each of our clients. We are proud of our superior credentials and our long-term commitment to the community. We are eager to help you establish an estate plan that is comprehensive and legally binding to protect your assets and your loved ones.
We are knowledgeable about the details of federal and state law, so we know exactly how to keep you from the pitfalls of:
- Excessive taxation (with a revocable trust)
- Unnecessary probate, leading to delays and high costs
- Insufficient preparation for retirement, long-term healthcare, or potential incapacity
- Losing out on government benefits because you have not adequately prepared for them
- Not taking steps to make sure your special needs child is sufficiently protected
- Failing to update your estate planning documents regularly
- Failing to ensure that your wishes concerning medical care, end-of-life care, and funeral or memorial arrangements are known and stated in legal documents
Documents Your Estate Planning Attorney Will Draft, Review, and Execute
Having a strong background in law and the specific meanings and innuendos of legalese gives your estate planning attorney the ability to prepare documents that will be durable. This is why those who think of estate planning as a simple do-it-yourself project are often sadly, even tragically, disappointed.
A competent estate planning attorney will create all the papers you need going forward, including:
- Your will in which you will designate your beneficiaries, name your executor, and state your wishes about interment or cremation, organ donation, etc.
- Trusts for various purposes, including protecting assets from unnecessary taxation and creditors, providing for those with special needs, protecting those who overspend, are psychiatrically troubled or have a problem with drugs, alcohol, or gambling.
- Documents regarding business succession
- Health care proxy, to name the person you want to make medical decisions for you if you are seriously injured or too ill to make them yourself
- Durable power of attorney in which you will designate someone to take over your financial matters if you are temporarily or permanently unable to attend to them
- Living will in which you can state your wishes concerning end-of-life care, such as whether or not you want to have a feeding tube or be on a ventilator if you are dying
The Things You Never Think Will Happen, Sometimes Do
One of the most significant mistakes you can make is to disregard the possibility that improbable events will happen. The possibility of dying young may seem remote, but in fact, you no doubt know of someone who suffered this misfortune. By the same token, your estate planning attorney will remind you that a certain percentage of people, most of whom are not expecting it:
- Go through a divorce
- Have a problem of substance abuse or gambling in their immediate family
- Experience an arrest or incarceration
- Are hit with an unexpected lawsuit for harassment, discrimination, or personal injury
- Suffer a serious or even catastrophic injury or illness
- Lose a business
- Acquire stepchildren or step-grandchildren through remarriage
- Find that a child of theirs has an extraordinary talent that requires resources
As your attorneys, we have had extensive experience advising multiple individuals and families, so we are well aware that life has a way of surprising us — big time! Neglecting to consider future events that are hard to imagine leaves you and your family unnecessarily vulnerable. Consult with us and avoid estate planning mistakes that may put you and your loved ones at risk.