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Estate Planning for the New Year

Legal Matters

      

Presented by: Bradford & Holliman, Estate Planning, www.bradfordholliman.com

A good new year resolution is to pay for estate planning for your grown children.  Not only is it a good idea, it is a great idea! 

An estate plan is something they need and just may save them immense heartache, anxiety and money in the event tragedy strikes. Some of the basic benefits an estate plan can provide:

  • Powers of Attorney – If your grown child is injured or becomes incapacitated, an agent is in place to take care of financial and healthcare matters.
  • Guardian -If the grown child has minor children and both parents are killed, a proper Will should name the guardian for the minor children.  This assignment can eliminate fights in the family over who should be guardian or if it doesn’t eliminate fights, it, at least, tells the judge who the parents have designated to be guardian regardless of who objects.
  • Trustee – A proper Will should name a trustee to manage assets/money for any minor children or any children that the parents feel need oversight.  Alabama law will allow a child to take possession of assets at age 19; however, few parents feel 19 is the proper age to give substantial assets to a child.  If you feel the child should be older before receiving inheritance, you will want to state the age and specify that the trustee is in charge until the child reaches that age.   
  • Distributing Assets – A Will allows your adult child to decide who should receive assets regardless of their familial relationship.  Without a Will, Alabama law decides who will get their assets. 

Young adults (and even older adults) rarely think about estate planning because they are busy living life, it is easy to procrastinate thinking about mortality, and they may not have the spare funds to pay for an estate plan.  However, taking the time and effort to create an estate plan can be the best thing you can do for your adult children. 

If your children do not have estate plans, paying for their plan is an excellent new year’s resolution.  It doesn’t allow you to tell them what to say in their plan, but it will give you peace of mind that they have things in order. No dieting required!

-Melanie Bradford Holliman 

Partner, Bradford & Holliman, LLC

Practice focuses on estate planning, elder law and special needs trusts.

2491 Pelham Parkway, Pelham, Ala. 35124

205-663-0281, www.bradfordholliman.com

This article is for educational purposes and is not intended for specific legal advice.

No representation is made that the quality of legal service to be performed is greater than the quality of service performed by other lawyers. 

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