Sun City West Estate Planning Attorney Helps Protect Your Future
Arizona lawyer serves clients in Surprise and throughout greater Phoenix
Many people look at estate planning as a simple exercise in preparing documents. Some even download templates from a website and proceed to fill in the blanks and check off certain boxes. Unfortunately, this approach is not a reliable way to accomplish what you want most from an estate plan: ensuring that your death or disability triggers vital support as quickly as possible, with the least disruption possible and the least possible intrusion by the court. At Pennington Law — Estate Planning, PLLC, I have more than 10 years of estate planning experience, counseling clients in a variety of circumstances, from active duty military members to retirees. I am committed to helping you create an estate plan that addresses the full range of your concerns at a price you can afford.
Highly personal approach to estate planning
To help you with estate planning that accomplishes your goals, I strive to understand your needs and concerns so I can tailor recommendations to your circumstances. I ask relevant questions to learn as much as possible about your situation, so I can provide reliable advice and appropriate options. By listening carefully to your concerns, I am able to help you identify the proper goals for your estate plan. I also take the time to educate my clients about the tools of estate planning. I can then implement a carefully planned strategy that addresses your family’s needs and gives you peace of mind.
Elements of a successful estate plan may include:
- Last will and testament — Your will is your last expression of affection for family, friends, and organizations you value. I help you draft and execute a valid will that can stand up against court scrutiny. It’s important for your will to be comprehensive, since any assets you haven’t mentioned may be excluded from probate and distributed according to state law. I also review existing wills and can help you change yours to more accurately reflect new circumstances. To keep your will current, I recommend reviewing it every three years or so.
- Living trust — This is a legal instrument for holding and transferring assets. A living trust is one you create during your lifetime to hold property for your own use and then pass it to your heirs when you die. A living trust can give you protection against claimants and creditors, thereby reserving more property for your retirement years. Trusts are superior to wills in certain respects. With a trust, your heirs avoid probate. Trusts are also very flexible instruments, allowing you to place conditions on gifts so you can protect the interests of your beneficiaries. Trusts can also help you preserve and protect assets from estate taxes.
- Living will — Also called an advance directive, a living will allows you to state the type of lifesaving procedures you wish to be taken or withheld in designated circumstances. You can choose whether to accept or rule out CPR, defibrillation, mechanical ventilation and various other types of care. You can also choose to be an organ or tissue donor.
- Power of attorney — This instrument allows one person, called the principal, to transfer decision-making authority to another person, known as the agent. A power of attorney can cover a variety of purposes, such as medical treatment or personal finances. It can transfer legal authority when it is created, or the authority can “spring” from a triggering event, such as the principal’s incapacity.
- Parent contingency plan — If you have minor children, it is important to express your preference regarding who should care for them in case you die or become indefinitely incapacitated. Although this is more urgent for single parents, couples cannot overlook the unlikely possibility they could be taken in a common accident.
Which estate planning tools are right for you depends on multiple circumstances. Relying on a one-size-fits-all approach can leave significant gaps in your plan and expose your family to a great deal of uncertainty. I am committed to designing comprehensive plans so you can enjoy peace of mind, now and in the future.
Contact an experienced Arizona estate planning lawyer today
Pennington Law — Estate Planning, PLLC helps clients in Surprise, Sun City West, Buckeye and vicinity create reliable estate plans that safeguard their future. I provide trustworthy counsel based on a personal approach to every detail of your estate plan. Call 623-208-7867 or contact me online to schedule your free consultation. Home and hospital visits are also available.