Have you thought about who you wish to leave your assets to when you die? Have you considered what you want your end-of-life care to be like, or who should make medical decisions for you if you are incapacitated. While these are not necessarily cheerful thoughts to have, putting estate planning documents in place to prepare for the future not only provides you with a peace of mind, but your loved ones with the ability to accept your assets without an expensive legal hassle involved. A Leicester estate planning lawyer can assist you in creating a thorough and up-to-date estate plan.

 

What Is Estate Planning?

Even if you aren’t a millionaire, you have an estate, and it consists of everything of value that you own, including your car, home and other property, business, bank and retirement accounts, and personal possessions. Estate planning is the act of putting a series of documents in place in order to designate individuals or organizations to whom you wish to leave your estate upon your death. However, a good estate plan provides even more benefits, including allowing you to leave instructions for your care and financial affairs if you should become incapacitated. A thorough estate plan also includes provisions to provide for family members with special needs without impacting the benefits they are able to obtain through government programs, and minimizes the taxes and costs associated with your beneficiaries accepting your assets.

 

When Should You Start Estate Planning?

Unfortunately, no one knows what is going to happen in the future or when that future will begin. Individuals often delay estate planning because they think they have plenty of time to worry about it when they’re older. However, if they become incapacitated or die before putting an estate plan in place, the state will appoint a guardian to oversee your care and divide your assets according to intestacy laws, often through a probate hearing, without consideration to what your desires for your assets and your end-of-life care.

 

The Most Important Documents for Your Estate Plan

A last will and testament is generally the first document generated in an estate plan and one of the most important, as it names an executor to oversee the distribution of your estate. This document also provides instructions on how you would like to have the assets divided and names the individual you want to care for your minor children in the event of your death. Other important documents include:

  • A durable power of attorney: This document designates an individual who you want to make financial decisions on your behalf if you are incapacitated.
  • An advance medical directive: This document appoints a healthcare agent and creates a living will that will help guide the medical decisions your family members and health care providers make on your behalf, including how and when to proceed with medical treatment.
  • A revocable living trust: This allows you to place your assets into a trust to be distributed upon your death without the need for probate.

It is worth noting that the most important and impactful documents you can have in your estate plan are those that are regularly updated to reflect all of the big changes, such as getting married or divorced, or having a child.

 

Do I Need a Lawyer for My Estate Plan in Leicester?

Obtaining the guidance and services of a Leicester estate planning lawyer is crucial for ensuring that you have the documents in place and regularly updated so that when the time comes that these documents are needed, your affairs are in order and clear instructions are provided as to your wishes. Your Leicester estate planning lawyer can also help you obtain tax benefits through your estate plan or to ensure that your beneficiaries are able to receive these assets in as inexpensive and stress-free way as possible.

Let an experienced estate planning attorney help you prepare for your future by ensuring that you have the required estate planning documents in place. Contact us for a consultation.

 

24+ years experience

Simple fixed pricing

4,000+
cases mediated

ESTATE & MEDICAID PLANNING ATTORNEY IN WORCESTER, MA

Serving all Worcester and Surrounding Areas

Hi, my name is Polly Tatum,

I help people protect what they care about most. If you are ready to start getting your estate plan in place, I can help.

As with most things in life, the more prepared you are, the better off you’ll be. 

Whether you have already started thinking about how you want your estate to be handled, or you are just now realizing you need a plan, you have come to the right place.

Let’s get started.

KNOW YOU’RE NOT ALONE

We are here to help you succeed and protect what you value most.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Does a Leicester Estate Planning Lawyer Do?

Also known as an estate law attorney, a Leicester estate planning lawyer has a thorough understanding of state and federal laws and how they impact how your assets are valued, distributed, and taxed after your death. They use this understanding in order to assist you in preparing the documents necessary for your estate plan. The types of services a Leicester estate planning lawyer provides include:

  • Creation of your will.
  • Designation of beneficiaries.
  • Establishing powers of attorney for your business and financial matters as well as ensuring your medical wishes are observed if you become incapacitated.
  • Exploring avenues through tax planning that will reduce the taxes and fees that your beneficiaries would face if required to go through the probate process in order to receive your inheritance.
  • Setting up trusts that will protect your assets in life and seemlessly transition them to someone else if you die or become incapacitated.

 

What Questions Should You Ask a Leicester Estate Planning Lawyer?

Some of the questions you should ask an estate planning lawyer include:

  • Is estate planning the primary focus of your firm? Law firms sometimes spread themselves thin, offering so many different practice areas and representing clients in so many issues that the clients may not receive the attention to detail that would be provided by a firm that specializes only in estate planning.
  • Where did you obtain your law degree and how long have you been practicing in Massachusetts? You want a lawyer who is licensed to practice law in your state, and one who has the most experience possible.
  • Who will execute the plan? Some lawyers prefer only to create the documents required for the estate plan, but do not actually execute the trusts. It is important to know from the get-go exactly which services your lawyer is providing.

 

What Should Be Included in Estate Planning?

A thorough plan will have, at the very minimum, these documents:

  • A will/trust
  • Durable powers of attorney
  • Designated beneficiaries
  • Letter of intent
  • Guardianship designations

A complete estate plan will also include the consideration of insurance products that will cover long-term care and life insurance to pass to beneficiaries without the need for probate.

 

check out what our clients are saying...

That's what really matters!

“She is fantastic to work with!
I highly recommend her.”

“We couldn't have been more pleased and grateful to Attorney Tatum for creating our comprehensive Estate Plan. As parents of two young adult sons - we wanted to make ...

Sheila King-Goodwin

“Professional while
empathetic.”

“Knowledgeable of the law including recent changes.. Professional while empathetic. Staff well trained and pleasant. Made an unpleasant situation more tolerable.

A Satisfied Client

“Five Stars Isn’t Enough!”

“My divorce was amicable, but the subsequent issues that came up when I got remarried and moved closer to my children created a lot of conflicts. We have four boys

Andrew

“5K Stars!”

“Polly did an amazing job navigating a tricky divorce. Her ability to advocate for both of us to each other during some very tense times was phenomenal. Not only were ...

Eric

“She handled my case with professionalism”

“Polly has helped several times during highly stressful situations. She handled my case with professionalism, empathy, patience and a great deal of humor ...

A Satisfied Client

Our 4-Step Process

Contact Us

Schedule
Appointment

Action Plan

Resolution

GET INSTANT CLARITY

ON WHAT'S HOLDING YOU BACK

FROM GETTING THE OUTCOME YOU WANT

Hi, Polly here. Please book a time we me so we can get crystal clear on how to overcome whatever it is in the way of living the life you truly want... click below to get started: