CA Estate Planning Blog

Monday, April 29, 2019

Ask Your Relatives About Their Estate Plan

How do I bring up the topic of estate planning with my family members?

It can be awkward to broach the topic of estate planning with your family. After all, none of us wish to discuss the death of our parents, grandparents, or siblings.  However, with fewer than half of all Americans having an estate plan, according to the most recent Gallup polls, not raising the topic could leave your loved one in a less than desirable position should they become incapacitated or pass away.  Our
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Thursday, April 25, 2019

Preventing Your Heirs from Mismanaging Your Funds

Can I control how my heirs manage their inheritance?

Some of us may have loved ones that are less than financially savvy.  Perhaps one of your children has a history of making poor financial decisions, or maybe your spouse struggles with bad shopping habits.  Whatever the situation may be, you could understandably fear for how your heirs may manage the funds you leave them after your death. Fortunately, there are steps you and your
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Sunday, March 31, 2019

Minimize Potential Family Conflict Surrounding Your Estate Plan

How can I avoid a challenge to my will after my death?

Your estate plan represents your last wishes to your heirs and loved ones.  The decisions you make concerning who will receive what assets will be done with much thought and care.  At times, you may be forced to make the tough decision of leaving out a certain loved one from your estate plan, or providing more to one heir over another.  Family conflict is one of the main concerns of anyone who sets out to make an estate plan.  The good news is by engaging in some advance planning as you create your estate plan, you can reduce family conflict and minimize the chance that your will is subjected to a legal challenge after your death.

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Saturday, March 30, 2019

Incorporating Transfer on Death Accounts into Your Estate Plan

What are transfer on death accounts?

You likely already have at least one transfer on death account, but you may not realize it.  Transfer on death accounts present a simple way to transfer some assets to your spouse or another loved one upon your death.  Properly setting up some transfer on death accounts could form a part of your comprehensive estate plan.  Our Orange County estate planning lawyers explain transfer on death accounts and why they can form a useful part of your estate plan below.

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Wednesday, February 20, 2019

What to Do If Your Identity Is Stolen

Do I need to freeze my credit if my identity has been stolen?

Since the advent of the internet, instances of identity theft have become more common with each passing year.  According to the Insurance Information Institute, in 2017 there were over 16.7 million victims of identity fraud, a record high up from previous years.  Just recently, some 145 million Americans had their personal information placed at risk due to an Equifax security breach, and millions more are now at risk of identity theft due to security breaches by Target, Chase, and other major corporations. Given the sheer number of those of us at-risk of identity theft, it is imperative that you know that steps to take should your identity become breached.
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Thursday, February 7, 2019

Including Your Pet in Your California Estate Plan

How can I ensure my pet is cared for after my death?

Pets are part of the family for many Americans across the country.  About 85 million families, or 68 percent of U.S. households, have a dog, cat, or another type of pet.  Despite the high levels of pet ownership, few pet owners have included their pet within their estate plan.
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Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Your Role as Estate Executor in California

What is my first step as personal representative of a California estate?

The role of personal representative or estate executor is a critically important one.  In the state of California, the personal representative will serve the vital role of inventorying and managing the property of the estate, paying all debts, and ultimately distributing the assets.  Finding out you will become an executor can be intimidating.  Perhaps you have been approached by a loved one and asked to serve as the executor of their estate if they pass away.  Maybe your friend or family member has already died and the court is seeking to name you as the estate executor.

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Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Updating Your Estate Plan After the Birth of Your Child

Who should I name as a guardian for my minor child?

Welcoming a child into your home is a life-changing experience.  With the birth or adoption of a child, your goals, life views, and focus will forever alter.  From the moment you look into your new child’s eyes, you know you will do anything to protect him or her from the challenges life may present.  For most, this will require making critical updates to your estate plan.  Our

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Friday, December 21, 2018

Naming More Than One Executor

What are the potential drawbacks of naming co-executors?

The role of executor is an important one.  Your named executor will be tasked with managing and protecting your assets, settling all debts, and ultimately distributing the assets in your estate.  Within your will or trust, you can name an individual to serve as the executor, or in the similar role of trustee. At times, people will struggle to name an executor and may consider the option of selecting more than one executor.  Naming co-executors can at times serve a purpose, but there are some potential drawbacks to choosing two or more executors.
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Thursday, December 20, 2018

Make Estate Planning a Part of Your New Year

What will happen if I die without an estate plan in California?


The New Year is a time of reflection and planning for many of us.  Making a few resolutions for the New Year is common practice for many.  While creating an estate plan may not be one of the first goals you think of for the coming year, making an estate plan could ultimately save your family from much heartache.  Consider taking the time this coming 2019 to sit down with an Read more . . .

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Estate Planning for Grandparents Raising Grandchildren

Can I skip a generation in my estate plan?

At times, circumstances arise requiring a grandparent step in to raise their grandchild.  The U.S. Census Bureau estimates that over 2.4 million grandparents have custody over their grandchildren in the country today.
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