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Estate Planning Archives

What should I look for in an estate planning attorney?

While you can perform estate planning tasks on your own, having an attorney by your side is often the better choice. Failure to create a solid and legally binding estate plan, which includes things like wills and trusts, will leave your family reeling in the aftermath of your death. When looking for a good attorney to help in this matter, The Balance recommends the following advice. 

Emotional considerations regarding estate planning

When it comes to the estate planning process, there are many financial considerations that people have to take into account, of course. However, there are other factors that may need to be taken into consideration while creating (or modifying) an estate plan. For example, people should consider the emotional impact of estate planning, not only with respect to their own emotions but their loved ones' emotions as well. There are various positive and negative emotions that may arise as a result of one's estate plan, and being prepared can be very helpful.

Does Rhode Island recognize holographic wills?

Many reason may exists as to why Rhode Island residents (and American adults in general) tend to put off their estate planning. Some might even tell you that you do not have to worry about it until you approach the end of your life, and that even when you do, all that's needed is a simple document (or even declaration) stating what you want done with your estates. This line of thinking fails to into account two very important points: first, no one knows when they are going to die (or much less have time to scribble down a last will and testament). Second, you should at least find out whether a hastily thrown together will is even valid. 

What you should know about the probate process

You may be filled with a myriad of emotions when you experience the loss of a close friend or loved one. While it can be difficult to navigate through this difficult time, there are matters of business that must be handled, such as managing the estate. Depending on how the deceased planned and organized their estate, dividing the estate to beneficiaries named in the will may be a simple process. If the deceased appointed an administrator, however, and did not set up the property in a trust, it may go through the probate process.

Restaurateur's estate virtually gone in six years

When setting one's estate plans in Providence, it is vitally important that the right people be asked to fill the right roles. Selecting an executor, personal representative or trustee should be a decision that a testator takes very seriously, given the authority that the people in those roles are empowered with. Typically, one establishes a very clear direction with how they want their estate to be managed, whether that be to immediate disperse funds to beneficiaries or generate income for them over time. Poor decisions on the part of a trustee or personal representative can easily derail those plans. 

Effective methods of reducing estate tax

They say that there are two certainties in life: death and taxes, and regrettably, Rhode Island residents cannot avoid either one. There are, however, some efforts you can make while you are still alive to reduce the amount of your estate that your loved ones will ultimately lose to taxes. At the Law Offices of James T. Marasco, we are well-versed in the most effective methods of reducing estate tax, and we have helped many people with similar goals accomplish this and other estate planning objectives.

Rhode Island's rules for intestate succession

Estate planning is not something that sits at the forefront of most Rhode Island residents' minds (nor those of most adults in the U.S., for that matter). Indeed, according to information shared by the American Association of Retired Persons, more than 60 percent of American adults do not have a will. This is the case despite estate planning experts advising all adults that they create such documents early on in their lives. The main motivation behind seeing to one's estate planning is control. Without a will in place, one forfeits the opportunity to dictate who will receive the assets that they have spent a lifetime accumulating. 

What is your role as an estate administrator?

If you have recently lost a close friend or loved one, you may be dealing with a host of emotions stemming from the loss. You may have even more emotions if you discover that your passed loved one named you as the estate administrator or executor to the will. As the estate executor, there are a myriad of tasks you are responsible for in settling the terms of the estate and ensuring that the deceased’s property is properly distributed to the beneficiaries named in the will.

Late author's daughter objects to casting of play characters

When preparing one's estate plans in Providence, one of the most important decisions to be made may be the selection of an executor. Whoever is asked to fill this role may be stepping into a monumental undertaking, one that can last for years (or even longer). This may be particularly true for estates that count intellectual properties amongst their assets. Renowned novels, songs or works of art may endure for many generations, and people may one day want to utilize them in their own works. It is in these scenarios where an executor or personal representative may really need to work to ensure that a creator's interests are well-represented. 

How can I avoid common estate planning mistakes?

Having a solid estate plan in place offers great peace of mind to both you and your family. However, it’s important that your plan is valid and legally binding, otherwise you run the risk of ending up in probate court. To help you and your legal team craft a reliable estate plan, The Street offers the following advice.

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