Many California families regularly discuss important issues regarding wills, trusts, advanced medical directives and other such matters. Others tend to avoid topics pertaining to mortality, thinking they will address such issues if an urgent need arises to necessitate their doing so. There are many reasons to consider estate planning as an option that is better implemented sooner than later.
A quick review of last year’s entertainment news shows several superstars suffered unexpected deaths and died without having executed thorough estate plans. For several, such as pop music star Prince, this led to heated debates as to how assets would be distributed. Even in some situations where an estate plan does exist, such as in the case of former actor Robin Williams, family members who disagree can delay the administration process if one or more parties files a petition to challenge the terms of a trust or contest a will.
Thinking ahead and developing a thorough estate plan allows one control over how assets and property will be distributed in the future. Without a plan, the distribution process is decided by the state’s laws of intestacy, which can be a costly and time-consuming process for loved ones. There is also no way to ensure that those inheriting one’s assets pursuant to statute would be the same persons an estate owner would have chosen.
Estate planning is a rather broad term that may include various types of documents. McCoy Fatula, APC can simplify the process by helping you design a plan that best aligns with your particular needs and goals. Laws governing such matters vary by state. Anyone with questions concerning California law may seek answers by contacting our office to request a consultation.