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December 2014 Archives

Understanding a living will for medical decisions

Many people are familiar with the purpose of a will. They understand that one of its primary purposes is to direct how assets will be distributed, and to whom, upon the will creator's death. Another important, yet commonly overlooked, element of estate planning is a living will. Although it is similar to a traditional will in that it is a written document with legal force, there are many differences between a standard will and a living will.

When navigating through long term planning, come to us

There are so many facets to long-term care planning that many people fail to discuss it or investigate the options. This is a mistake, though, because long term planning is one of the best ways of protecting assets and ensuring that your wishes are carried out when you are no longer able to articulate them or make them known. Many people think that long term planning is unnecessary but the reality is that the majority of people will need some form of care, whether temporary or permanent, at some point in their lives. Furthermore, long-term care planning is not solely related to medical needs or designating powers of attorney in the case of incapacity.

What is a marital trust and what does it accomplish?

One of the key goals of estate planning for many Michigan residents is tax planning and providing for their relatives and heirs. People want to figure out the best way to set up their wills and inheritances so that the maximum amount possible of the estate is preserved for heirs and beneficiaries instead of going toward taxes. Trusts can be a very valuable tool for tax planning and estate planning purposes.

Power of attorney used to defraud elderly woman

Estate planning can be difficult. It requires people to plan for events to take place after their death or for when they are no longer able to manage their own affairs the way they were accustomed to previously. Planning for these circumstances is very important, however, especially if people want to maintain their independence as long as possible and direct the way their affairs will be managed when they are no longer able to personally manage them. A power of attorney is a very useful tool to achieve these goals, but it is important to make a wise choice to avoid exploitation or other problems, as the story of one Michigan women recently revealed.

Understanding the probate process in Michigan

In Michigan, the term probate generally refers to the administration of the estate of a person who has died. The term generally encompasses the estate administration regardless of whether the deceased person had a will--and thus made his or her wishes regarding assets and property known--or did not have a will. However, having a will simplifies the probate process because assets and property previously owned by the deceased person will be distributed according to the will provisions as long as the will is deemed valid.

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