Wills, Trusts, and Estate Planning

Wills, Trusts, and Estate Planning

Who Needs an Estate Plan? 

People put off estate planning for various reasons: they feel they don't have enough assets to make it worthwhile, the topic makes them uncomfortable, or they simply don't see the need. The reality is that every adult needs an updated estate plan, regardless of the size of their estate. Estate planning is particularly important for the following groups:
  • Parents with minor children, to ensure the children's financial support and that they will be cared for by the people their parents choose.
  • Parents with special needs children of any age.
  • Adults in a second marriage who have children from a previous marriage, in order to ensure that both a surviving spouse and adult children receive the assets the grantor intends to leave them.
  • Business owners, to ensure that their business survives and passes into the right hands.
  • Unmarried adults who wish to leave part of their estate to a partner or other unrelated person.
  • People who want to leave part of their estate to a favorite charity or organization.
  • People who want to maximize the assets received by their loved ones and minimize taxes paid to the government.
  • People who would like to have control over their own medical decisions, even if they become incompetent or disabled.
  • People who want to preserve family relationships and avoid fighting over their estate when they are deceased

At Nazette, Marner, Nathanson & Shea, LLP, we offer comprehensive estate planning services at reasonable cost to address every need. Our focus is on working with our clients in a comfortable environment to identify their estate planning goals, and to select the estate planning tools that are right for them. Even those clients who are apprehensive about the process at the outset quickly express an appreciation of the peace of mind our work helps them to achieve.

Estate Planning Services from Nazette, Marner, Nathanson & Shea, LLP

Because all clients and families are different, we offer a variety of services with which to customize each estate plan and meet our clients' individual needs. Our extensive experience in this area allows to select the tools that will achieve our clients' goals with the least expense and fewest complications. Among the services we offer are:

  • Wills: This document communicates to your heirs and the probate court how you wish to dispose of all assets in your name that do not have a designated beneficiary.
  • Medical Directives and Living Wills: These directives instruct healthcare providers on medical treatment you should receive if you are no longer able to communicate that information yourself. Medical directives can also appoint someone to make medical decisions on your behalf if you are incapacitated.
  • Revocable and Irrevocable Trusts: These mechanisms are useful for protecting assets from creditors, directing how they are to be used both during your life and afterward, and helping them pass from grantor to beneficiary outside of the probate process.
  • Asset Protection Planning: For clients with significant assets, this type of comprehensive plan minimizes tax burden while allowing control of assets and access to the income they generate.
  • Financial Power of Attorney: This directive gives an individual you designate the power to handle financial matters on your behalf if you are incapacitated.
  • Planned Giving: For clients who wish to leave assets to a favorite charity or organization, planned giving can allow the realization of tax benefits now while maintaining use of or income from the asset until death.
  • Medicaid and Long-Term Care Planning: Proper planning puts in place insurance and other tools to provide for needed nursing home or long-term care, without draining assets intended for the use of loved ones.
  • Succession Planning: For those clients who have spent years building a business, succession planning ensures a smooth transition between their own management and their chosen successor, avoiding waste and preserving assets.
  • Retirement Planning: Nazette, Marner, Nathanson & Shea, LLP  helps clients plan for a reliable income stream in retirement through the use of tax-free and tax-deferred retirement accounts, annuities, and other strategies.
  • Tax Planning: Our attorneys keep abreast of the ever-evolving tax code so that we can help our clients protect their income and assets from being consumed by tax obligations. For more information, we invite you to visit our Tax Preparation and Strategy page.
  • Guardianships and Conservatorships: If a loved one is no longer capable of managing their personal or financial affairs, we can assist in getting a guardian or conservator appointed to take care of those matters.
  • Prenuptial Agreements: Prenuptial agreements are a common and helpful estate planning tool, and are especially useful to clarify goals and expectations in second marriages when the parties have children from previous relationships.

Estate planning is about much more than money. It's about securing your own future and that of the people who are important to you. We look forward to working with you to provide for your estate planning needs.

Contact our office in Cedar Rapids to schedule your initial consultation: (319) 366-1000.

 

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