8 Most Frequently Asked Estate Planning Questions

When planning for the future, there is quite a lot to consider in terms of legal and medical documentation. With the coming of age, a will, healthcare proxy, and power of attorney become imminent in your journey into the future. In order to ensure that your wishes and desires are followed through according to your specified plan, it is greatly recommended that you consider drafting a will. It is also extremely important that you select an individual you trust to the greatest extent as the one responsible for making your health and estate decisions once you reach an old age or become incapacitated. The healthcare proxy will have the ability to make medical decisions on your behalf to ensure that you are receiving the best treatment possible for your condition. The power of attorney will have the ability to make financial decisions on your behalf based upon the actions that would serve in your best interest, as this individual is the one responsible for paying for your healthcare. These documents must be properly drafted, completed, and notarized according to the outlined standards of NY State law, meaning there is a necessity for the presence of two witnesses and an attorney. It may seem quite complex and overwhelming when you are trying to decide how to appoint a specified agent for your power of attorney or a selected individual as your healthcare proxy. The best method to ensure that all of your documents are completed according to your wishes and are carried out based on NY State law is to hire an Estate Planning Attorney to draft all of the documentation. The Law Office of Inna Fershteyn charges only $1,000 for a Will package that will include all of the documents you will need in order to properly plan your future. This Will package entails a comprehensive estate planning session, drafting and executing of the will, living will creation, healthcare proxy documentation, and power of attorney documentation with the presence of two witnesses and an attorney.

Commonly Asked Questions Concerning Beginning the Estate Planning Process

When it comes to estate planning, there are numerous questions that are frequently asked on behalf of the individual planning for their future. Below are 8 of the most frequently asked estate planning questions:

  1. What does Estate Law pertain to?

Estate Law is a subdivision of property law that focuses on the manner in which an individual’s belongings are cared for. These belongings include property, assets, and more. Estate law pertains to the drafting and execution of wills, the creation of a living will, selecting a healthcare proxy, and creating a power of attorney, all in terms of estate planning. Additionally, estate law focuses on the distribution of monetary value in the form of assets and property once the individual has passed away.

2. What are the benefits to hiring an Estate Lawyer?

An esteemed Estate Planning Attorney will assist you in updating and revising your documents as deemed fit. Documents such as the will, trust, power of attorney, healthcare proxy are meant to be revisited as an individual’s financial situation may change or their overall wishes for the future may differ over time. The attorney will ensure that the documents not only adhere to state laws, but also directly correlate to your personal preferences. You will be able to create beneficiary designations on assets and ensure that these beneficiaries are properly cared for even after your passing.

3. How do I initiate the process of working with an Estate Lawyer?

The very first step to hiring an Estate Lawyer is researching various attorneys and scrolling through their home page to read comments about their previous cases involving estate planning. It is effective to not only look at prices, but to consider the extent of experience the attorney has in the field and their specific plans for estate planning. Once you have selected an attorney that you feel best represents your interests and needs you can contact them via the contact subsection of the website. Additionally, you may call the office number or send an email to indicate interest. Afterwards, the attorney will set up a consultation to discuss your interests and create a plan. Based on this interaction, you will be able to decide if this attorney is a perfect fit for your specified needs.

4. Should I create a will even if I have a small estate?

Absolutely, creating a will is imperative regardless of the size and monetary value of your estate. Any assets not directly stated within the will are subject to distribution by the state court system and must pass through the extremely long probate process. It is extremely recommended that the testator leaves a will indicating his interests and wishes in regard to the distribution of his property. The testator will select an executor who will be responsible for carrying out your payment of debts, distribution of property, and settling accounts specified within the will.

5. How much does an attorney charge for a living trust in NY?

A Living Trust typically costs between $5000 to $6000 per couple. A Living Trust is a document that is created by an individual known as a grantor, where this individual nominates a person (who can be the grantor as well if the trust is Revocable) as a trustee to act on their behalf. The Living Trust is absolutely worth it as it transfers your assets without having to go through a probate process (process lasts 2-3 years with the presence of the Covid-19 pandemic) by ensuring that all of your assets are properly cared for while you are alive and may become mentally or physically disabled and effectively distributed upon your passing without paying over 6% of your entire estate for NY probate or administration process

6. What should you never put in your will?

There are a variety of details that you should not include in your will, simply because they would better belong elsewhere. Assets with named beneficiaries should not be included, as certain assets are payable or transferable upon death. You should not include joint tenancy property, as it is done automatically upon your death by law. Life insurance proceeds that already have a beneficiary should not be included because the proceeds would automatically go to the spouse or the minor children. It is recommended to avoid leaving gifts to loved ones or pets in the will.

7. What would happen if one dies without a will?

In the case that an individual passes away without a will set in place, the state will be the one responsible for deciding on the manner of distribution of your assets. This is not recommended, as the state is most likely not going to take your wishes and best interest into consideration upon making the final decision.

8. Which items comprise my estate?

Some items that comprise a potential estate include real estate, personal property, retirement plans, life insurance, cash, and more. Therefore it is important to hire an Estate Planning Attorney to ensure that your assets are preserved to the fullest extent possible, while ensuring that your loved ones receive the exact value you had intended them to receive.

For further Estate Planning information please contact the Law Office of Inna Fershteyn at 718-333-2394 to best prepare for your future through will drafting, power of attorney, healthcare proxy, and living will documentation.