Washington, DC Estate Planning Lawyer
Everyone leaves behind an estate when they pass away. A DC estate planning lawyer can provide you with assistance to help ensure your estate is protected from creditors, assessed the minimum of taxes, and transfers to your loved ones without undue trouble. Estate planning is about more than just creating a will to say what happens to your assets after you die.
Contact a trusts and estates attorney in the Washington, DC area to learn what you should include in your estate plan and for assistance creating a comprehensive plan to secure your future.
Legacy and estate planning touches every facet of our lives
Nothing is more important to you than your loved ones, and you care about their future. You work hard to provide for your loved ones, and think about retirement and how you’ll manage. At the end of the day, your loved ones are your legacy, but maybe you can afford to do something more for an important cause.
Every day, whether we know it or not, we are thinking about our legacy and the future. However, thinking about the future is not the same as formally planning for the future with a trusted, service-oriented legacy and estate planning attorney. The experienced legacy and estate planning attorneys at Altman & Associates offer decades of knowledge and compassion when you need counsel.
Why is a DC Estate Planning Lawyer Necessary?
A DC estate planning lawyer will help you to create a will and take steps to ensure your wishes are respected, including assigning beneficiary designations. However, your attorney does so much more than just provide assistance with drafting a simple document expressing your wishes for after your death. Your lawyer can help you to take care of other important estate planning steps, like providing details on what kinds of medical treatments you want to receive in the future or who should make your decisions for you if you become unable to act in your own best interests. Estate administration is crucial after planning, and an attorney can help.
DETERMINING THE ESTATE
If you pass away before creating a last will and testament, intestacy laws will determine who inherits your property. This usually means spouses and children inherit first, followed by more distant relatives if you are not married and do not have kids. Individuals who have been married more than once may need to take into account their ex-spouse’s estate. Your estate is vulnerable to creditor claims and, if it is large enough, taxes could be assessed on the estate.
Your estate can also be tangled up in the courts for a long time if there are questions about who inherits, and your family members may devolve into fighting over your assets at the same time as they are forced to cope with grief. Even if you do not yet have children or believe yourself too young, it is never too early to begin estate planning. If you do have a last will and testament, a DC estate planning lawyer can also explain to you the impact of that will on the rest of your estate.
Too often, individuals only associate legacy and estate planning with death. It is true that having even a basic estate plan in place has significant benefits in the event that you pass away or become terminally injured.
It is also true that your family will save a significant amount of money and stress if you make arrangement for your affairs and, to the extent possible, limit the probate process. But legacy and estate planning is also about living your life to the fullest and maximizing your resources. Individuals are often unaware of other benefits of legacy and estate planning such as:
- Eliminating personal liability for business activity;
- Mitigating federal gift, estate, and generation-skipping taxes without loss of control or access;
- Funding charitable gifts now and after you pass;
- Establishing support systems for you or your loved ones in the event significant medical care or special needs care is required; and
- Providing legal and financial flexibility now, and a leaving a plan for the future which established peace of mind today.
Securing Your Future Through Experienced Counsel
Legacy and estate planning is a broad process with many considerations. Our team here at Altman & Associates has the knowledge and tools to simplify the process and provide unparalleled services. We have convenient office locations in Columbia, Rockville, Washington, D.C. and Northern Virginia. Contact us by phone at (301) 468-3220 or online to schedule a consultation.