There are a lot of things that can be fun to do yourself. In fact, many home projects can save you a ton of money if you learn to take care of them on your own without the help of a paid professional. However, when it comes to your estate planning, you don’t want to take any chances. Here are three reasons:
- Mistakes – Even if you go to a legal website that offers a form will and legal support, there are still mistakes that can easily be made. Whether it is something that is omitted that should have been in your will or perhaps wording that is not valid in California (since legal matters vary from state to state), you just want to be sure that your planning is valid.
- Dispute resolution – Don’t let your life’s work end up tied up in probate court for months or even years before your beneficiaries are left with what hasn’t been spent on court fees. The wording is key when it comes to estate planning. You want to be sure that things are ironclad, so no one can challenge your decisions.
- Confidence – Hiring an attorney can give you peace of mind because you won’t have to worry if your DIY will is good enough to get your wishes carried out.
Southern California’s Premier Estate Planning Attorneys
If you are ready to prepare your estate plan with confidence, then it is time to call the pros at Petrov Law Firm. Dial 619-344-0360 today to get the help you need in being prepared for the future.Read More
Being a successor trustee is a weighty responsibility. You want to be sure that person you select will do what is best for the trust and ensure a good financial future for your beneficiaries. However, there are some common pitfalls that a successor trustee could fall into. Here are a few ways to provide help that may prevent the most common pitfalls.
- Bookkeeping errors – Is your trustee level-headed but not the best with numbers? An accountant can help ensure that no mistakes are made. Plus, a second set of eyes keeps everyone on the straight and narrow.
- Crossing the line – A successor trustee can fall into think that he or she plays a larger role in how the assets are preserved than you intended. Leaving precise instructions will help your trustee to remember what his or her proper function is.
- Envy – Your trustee sees what you are leaving to your beneficiaries and is the one doing all the work. In order to avoid feelings of envy or jealousy from clouding the trustee’s judgment, it is a good idea to provide adequate compensation.
It is also important to be objective when selecting your successor trustee. The best way to avoid problems is to select the best person for the job rather than allowing sentiment to get in the way.
California Estate Planning Experts
For more assistance with trusts, contact the estate planning attorneys at Petrov Law Firm by calling 619-344-0360. We are happy to help California residents plan for the future with confidence.Read More
You may seem to have two goals that are at odds. You want to set aside a nice nest egg for your future heirs to enjoy. However, you also want to build up funds so that you are comfortable after retirement, even if you live to a very old age. How can you make your estate planning and retirement planning work together? The secret may be to make your trust the beneficiary of your retirement fund.
Mistakes Heirs Make with a Retirement Fund
It may seem to make sense just to leave your retirement fund directly to a beneficiary. After all, the funds won’t go through probate. However, there are some mistakes that a grieving heir may make which could seriously affect a retirement fund. For example:
- Taking the funds too soon – Your beneficiary may not realize there are large penalties for taking the retirement money too soon.
- Taking the funds all at once – Taking the fund in such a lump sum could result in half of what you saved going to Uncle Sam instead of your beneficiary.
Leaving the funds to a trust means that you can appoint a successor trustee to help dispense the funds at the right times. This allows you to leave the fund to your loved ones but not the responsibility of knowing when best to withdraw the money.
Wise Planning for Your Family’s Future
If you have assets, including a retirement account, to leave to your heirs, contact Petrov Law Firm today by calling 619-344-0360. We can help you to settle your affairs today so that your family can enjoy a comfortable future.Read More
California probate court is where decisions are made regarding the estates of both those who die with no will and those who have a will. What do you need to know about California probate court so you can do your estate planning accordingly?
If I Don’t Have a Will, Does Probate Court Appoint an Executor?
Not exactly. There is someone who will be appointed to handle your affairs, but an executor is someone whom you appoint in a last will and testament to take care of these matters for you.
What Happens to Taxes or Debts That I Owe?
Probate court ensures that all of these debts are paid from your estate. Thus, whatever is left over and goes to your heirs will be theirs without the worries that a bill collector will come knocking at the door later on. Since there is only a brief window for collectors to receive anything, this may encourage some of the debts to be forgiven.
Is Probate Public Record?
Yes. If you rely on probate to care for your estate, anyone will be able to go and look up who your beneficiaries are and what they received. This can make them targets of scams.
How Long Will My Estate Be Tied Up?
It depends. Funds can be stuck in court for months or even years depending on whether it is very clear who should receive your assets. This can be a huge financial drain on the estate as well.
Where Can I Get Estate Planning Help to Avoid Probate?
If you want your assets to avoid probate in California, Petrov Law Firm in San Diego can help. Our experienced attorneys can help you to set up the right type of trust fund so that your beneficiaries can receive assets much faster. To learn more, call 619-344-0360 to schedule a consultation.Read More
We hope that your children get to enjoy your loving care for many years to come. But what if an unforeseen accident should occur in your life? You can use your estate planning to protect your minor children. There is no substitute for you, but there are ways to look after your kids, even if you pass away unexpectedly. Here are a few important tips:
- Appoint a legal guardian – The children need to have somewhere to go if left without parents. A good family friend whom the children like and that is up to the responsibility is important.
- Set up a trust fund – A trust fund can allow you to provide financially for your children. While the bulk of the funds may not become available until the children come of age, you can allow dispensations for certain events such as if your child graduates early and needs money for college before he or she turns 18.
Don’t Leave Your Child’s Future to Chance
Sure, it will be better if your estate planning doesn’t take effect for many years because you live to see your children grow up, get married, and have kids of their own. But you can’t leave things to chance. Planning ahead will protect your child in case you are tragically taken from their life by an accident or illness.
The compassionate estate planning attorneys at Petrov Law Firm will be happy to help walk you through the process of setting up an estate plan in California. To learn more, call our offices today at 619-344-0360.Read More
When it comes to estate planning, there are some common mistakes that people make. Here are some of the big ones, and why you don’t want to make the same errors.
- Leaving it for later – An accident can happen to anyone. Don’t leave your legacy up to chance simply because you don’t like thinking about your own mortality.
- Never doing it – Some people have the mistaken impression that estate planning is only for people who have millions of dollars. Regardless of the size of your estate, you should be planning ahead for the future. Estate planning is about more than just money.
- Not planning for medical emergencies – Sure, you have plans for when you die, but what about if you live? Whether you are in a coma or are just temporarily incapacitated, you want a plan in place so that someone can look after your material possessions until you regain the ability to do so or you leave them to your beneficiaries. It is this in-between gap that many people fail to plan for.
Planning for Your Future the Smart Way
If you want to plan ahead for your future in southern California, then enlist the help of the qualified estate planning attorneys at Petrov Law Firm. We can help you to avoid the pitfalls of estate planning so that things go as you plan, even if you are not there to see the plan through yourself. To get started, call 619-344-360 and schedule a consultation today.Read More
You may recognize some of the benefits of leaving your estate to heirs by means of a trust rather than simply executing a will. It is a great way to avoid having your funds tied up in probate battles. However, you need to understand the different types of trust.
An Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust
When you are leaving a life insurance policy to a beneficiary, you want to protect the funds from creditors. You can also add other funds to the trust besides the life insurance money. You can even designate funds in the trust to be used for paying the policy premiums while you are alive, ensuring that there is never a delayed or missed payment that could result in the policy being withheld from your family. The trust is considered irrevocable because only you can modify the trust while you are alive or your beneficiary after you pass on.
A Revocable Living Trust
This is a great way to set aside funds for loved ones while still being able to adjust the trust at any time while you are alive. You can establish a successor trustee to ensure that your beneficiaries receive the funds as directed by the trust. You can even make the trust your life insurance beneficiary. Since the trust is revocable, you can take trust distributions while you are still alive. When you die, it automatically transfers to your beneficiaries and becomes irrevocable.
Help Establishing Trust Funds in California
The estate planning attorneys at Petrov Law Firm will be happy to help you determine what sort of trust is best for you and your heirs. To learn more, you can call our San Diego office at 619-344-0360.Read More
If you are a resident of the state of California, one of the things that you have to think of when it comes to estate planning is how you want medical matters to be cared for should you ever become incapacitated. This makes decision making easier on the family because they know your wishes, so there is no fighting.
In order to ensure your wishes are carried out, you will want to execute an Advance Healthcare Directive. Not only can you outline your medical wishes, but you can also designate a representative to carry out your wishes or make decisions for you if you are unconscious or otherwise unable to speak for yourself.
Another document that you may want to consider is a living will. This allows you to make end of life decisions in advance. That can remove the burden from family members should you ever be in a situation where all that is keeping you alive is a machine at the hospital.
Finally, you will want to provide the proper HIPPA authorization documents so that your doctors can share your medical information with the person you have designated as a healthcare agent. Being able to speak directly with the doctor or facility you are in will make it easier to ensure your wishes are carried out.
Comprehensive Estate Planning in California
Petrov Law Firm in San Diego can help you to plan properly for your future healthcare. To learn more, contact us today at 619-344-0360 and schedule a consultation with our experienced estate planning attorneys.Read More
Mental illness is increasingly common in the world today. If a relative has an illness, it doesn’t make you love them any less or want to take care of them any less. Therefore, your estate plan needs to be able to help you provide the support you want your loved one to have while compensating for the fact that he or she may not be able to manage the money alone. Here are a few tips to help guide you.
- A loyal and compassionate trustee. By appointing the right trustee over any trust that you leave to your loved one, you can ensure that the funds will be used for your loved one at the right times and in the proper amount.
- Controlling what funds can be dispensed for. Perhaps your loved one doesn’t need someone to care for him or her, but is still concerned about things like impulse spending or squandering the inheritance in other ways? Structuring the inheritance so that funds are only released for certain types of expenses is a good way to protect your loved one.
- Covering voluntary treatment costs. You can structure the trust so that your loved one receives a dispensation when he or she seeks medical care relating to the condition. This may move your loved one to see the high value of proper treatment and may provide the funds necessary to get the right care without the guilt of how expensive medical treatment can be in the US.
Discretionary Trusts and Other Estate Planning Methods in California
At Petrov Law Firm in San Diego, our estate planning attorneys will be happy to help you plan for the future needs of your loved ones. To see what types of estate planning are best for your family, contact us today at 619-344-0360.Read More
Usually, people are encouraged not to waste their time worrying about things that may never happen, but when you are working on an estate plan, you do have to think about certain scenarios that may be unlikely but that would seriously affect your plans. Here are three “what ifs” that your estate plan should account for.
- What if there is a family conflict after I die? A big inheritance can bring out the worst, even in families that are very close-knit. The best way to protect your loved ones is to be very explicit about who gets what. You may even choose a non-family member as your executor.
- What if my mate and I die together? If a tragedy should occur such as an accident or a disaster, this is a possible scenario. Plan ahead by outlining succession in your estate plan and be certain to include plans for the care of minor children should they lose both parents at once.
- What if I die in another country? If you regularly travel or live in another country for part of the year, be sure that dying in another country will not affect your estate plan. You may need the assistance of a lawyer from the country you spend a lot of time in along with your local estate planning attorney.
Crossing the T’s and Dotting the I’s in California
For California estate planning, contact the attorneys at Petrov Law Firm. Our experienced and compassionate lawyers can help you to plan ahead for all of the “what ifs” so that you can have the peace of mind you deserve. Call 619-344-0360 to get started today.Read More