Leaving behind a legacy is not just something wealthy people do. Whether you have built a business, have millions in the bank, or have a small estate, you can make gifts and make a lasting difference to the people you love after you are gone.
You want your death to be a time when your family comes together to comfort each other in grief and to be a time when your loved ones can appreciate all you have left behind for them. This means you need to create a legacy plan to protect your assets, to ensure the seamless transfer of property and money, and to ensure that you have provided as much as possible for your heirs.
Schomer Law can help. We offer legacy planning services to clients in Los Angeles and surrounding areas. Our services are tailored to your needs, so contact us now to learn about the assistance we can offer. We will also answer questions you may have including:
- Why is legacy planning important?
- What is involved with legacy planning?
- How can a Los Angeles legacy planning lawyer help me?
Why is Legacy Planning Important?
Legacy planning is important because you want to control how you are remembered and you want to make sure your assets are a benefit and not a burden. When you create a legacy plan, you can:
- Protect assets. You don’t want your legacy to be lost because you have to spend down your money for long-term care. There are better options to ensure you can get Medicaid to cover your nursing home costs so your assets can go to your loved ones.
- Determine what gifts to make. Who should get family heirlooms and how should money be divided? You can support a charity, provide financial security for loved ones, and avoid family fighting by determining who inherits.
- Ensure the seamless transfer of assets. You can explore estate planning options that will allow probate to be avoided and that will ensure heirs inherit quickly. This can be especially important if you have a family business or many investments which need to be carefully managed.
- Ensure your gifts are a benefit to heirs. If you have spendthrift relatives, if you worry about assets being lost to ex spouses or creditors, or if you have special needs relatives, you may not want to just transfer money and property. Legacy planning allows you to explore other solutions.
- Limit taxes. You can reduce the potential loss of a part of your estate to estate taxes through careful and strategic tax planning.
These are just a few of the different things you can accomplish by putting a solid plan in place. It is up to you to determine what you want your legacy to be- and it is up to Schomer Law to create a plan for you that will make your dream a reality.
What is Involved with Legacy Planning?
The specific steps you will take and legal tools you will use are going to vary greatly during legacy planning depending upon the type and amount of assets you have and the legacy you want to leave behind for your loved ones. Some of the different things which may be involved include:
- The creation of a last will and testament
- The creation and funding of a trust
- The creation of a Medicaid plan
- Inter vivos gifts (gifts made while living) to charity or to loved ones
- Structuring business ownership to allow for seamless transfer
These are just a few of many possible steps that you may wish to take to ensure you can protect your assets during your life and after death and to ensure that you do not become a burden to your loved ones upon your death.
Many people who create a legacy plan want to reduce stresses on surviving family members by helping them to avoid the probate process and even by ensuring money is managed effectively for them. Whatever your goals for your family, for the charities you support, and for your own future, a good legacy plan will help you to achieve them.
How Can a Los Angeles Legacy Planning Lawyer Help?
Schomer Law attorneys are members of the Elder Law Counsel and of the American Academy of Estate Planning attorneys. We know the laws that apply and the tools that are available for successful legacy planning. Give us a call as soon as possible so you can discuss your goals and dreams with us and so we can help you to work on a plan to ensure your legacy is one your heirs will appreciate through the generations.