Estate planning is the process of making sure your final wishes are taken care of after your death. I believe everyone should take the time to put at least a basic plan in place at some point in their life. By planning your estate, you can strive to spare your family the burden of unnecessary expenses and delays. If you need guidance on where to begin, my firm, Carl J. Mangine, Attorney at Law, PLLC, is here to help. Schedule a consultation with me in Schertz, Texas, if you are located in Universal City, Converse, New Braunfels, San Antonio, or any of the surrounding areas of Guadalupe County.
Handling an estate is something that takes patience and thoroughness. There are many aspects that go into the planning of the estate. I can assist you with a variety of areas, including:
- Wills - A simple will is a document that allows you to name a guardian to your offspring and pets, designate where you want your assets to go, and specify how you want your final arrangements to come about.
- Trusts - Trusts are a tad more complex than wills. Trusts can offer great benefits like greater control over the way your assets are distributed.
- Powers of Attorney - Declaring a power of attorney can take the stress off your back in many unforeseeable scenarios.
- Advance Directives - If you are ill or injured, your loved ones can be faced with a difficult decision in the future. An advanced directive gives your family and healthcare professionals guidance on how you would like your affairs to be sorted.
- Life Estates - Most elderly people want to keep hold of their independence but want their assets to be controlled by their kin. A life estate gives the elderly the benefits of control without actually being in possession.
Regardless of your age or health, it is important to handle your estate and assets as early as possible. It is also ideal to avoid probate. Probate is when the courts intervene in the handling of your estate. Using the process of “independent administration” of estates, probate in Texas is much simpler and involves a lot less court intervention than it does in other states. In Texas, you can create a living trust to avoid probate for just about all of the assets that you own. A living trust, similar to a will, names someone to take over as your trustee after your death.