Estate Planning Services
Essex and Associates offers Estate Planning Services in Dayton,Ohio and throughout the Miami Valley and has attorneys that serves their clients at their facility.
No matter your net worth, it's important to have a basic estate plan in place.
Such a plan ensures that your family and financial goals are met after you die.
Our firm provides, at absolutely no charge, an “Because I love you booklet”.
This booklet which is over 30 pages long is a necessity in case of a death.
The booklet also comes with a CD so that you can create your own end of life document.
Included in this packet is all the information that you will need to insure a smooth transition of assets between individuals and generations.
Of all the things that our firm does, and we do much, we get more “kudos” for our “Because I love you booklet” than any other thing.
Other firms have similar documents but charge up to $500 to fill out.
We will be glad to meet with you and help you with the data input.
This booklet will include: inventory of assets, a will; assignment of power of attorney; and a living will or health-care proxy (medical power of attorney).
For some people, a trust may also make sense. When putting together a plan, you must be mindful of both federal and state laws governing estates.
Taking inventory of your assets is a good place to start.
Your assets include your investments, retirement savings, insurance policies, and real estate or business interests.
Ask yourself three questions:
Whom do you want to inherit your assets?
Whom do you want handling your financial affairs if you're ever incapacitated?
Whom do you want making medical decisions for you if you become unable to make them for yourself?
Everybody needs a will.
A will tells the world exactly where you want your assets distributed
when you die.
It's also the best place to name guardians for your children.
Dying without a will — also known as dying "intestate" — can be costly to your heirs and leaves you no say over who gets your assets. Even if you have a trust, you still need a will to take care of any holdings outside of that trust when you die.
Trusts aren't just for the wealthy.
Trusts are legal mechanisms that let you put conditions on how and when your assets will be distributed upon your death.
They also allow you to reduce your estate and gift taxes and to distribute assets to your heirs without the cost, delay and publicity of probate court, which administers wills.
Some also offer greater protection of your assets from creditors and lawsuits.
Discussing your estate plans with your heirs may prevent disputes or confusion.
Inheritance can be a loaded issue.
By being clear about your intentions, you help dispel potential conflicts after you're gone.
The federal estate tax exemption — the amount you may leave to heirs free of federal tax — changes regularly.
The estate tax hit $3.5 million in 2009, but was phased out completely in 2010, but only for a year. The tax was reinstated in 2011 at $5 million.
You may leave an unlimited amount of money to your spouse tax-free, but this isn't always the best tactic.
By leaving all your assets to your spouse, you don't use your estate tax
exemption and instead increase your surviving spouse's taxable estate.
That means your children are likely to pay more in estate taxes if your spouse leaves them the money when he or she dies.
Plus, it defers the tough decisions about the distribution of your assets until your spouse's death.
There are two easy ways to give gifts tax-free and reduce your estate.
You may give up to $13,000 a year to an individual (or $26,000 if you're married and giving the gift with your spouse).
You may also pay an unlimited amount of medical and education bills for someone if you pay the expenses directly to the institutions where they were incurred.
There are ways to give charitable gifts that keep on giving.
If you donate to a charitable gift fund or community foundation, your investment grows tax-free and you can select the charities to which contributions are given both before and after you die.
Everybody needs an estate plan.
Using our “Because I love you booklet” is a great place to start.
Contact Essex and Associates for the Estate Planning services Dayton,Ohio and the Miami Valley turn to for all their estate planning needs, you'll be glad you did!
And don't forget to request your FREE " Because I Love You Booklet "