Woman signing paperwork naming an executor to her estate.

How to Make Things Easier for Your Executor

When you name someone as the executor of your estate, you are sending a message that you trust them significantly because this person is responsible for handling all of your affairs when you are no longer around. You are also passing on a lot of tasks and work for this executor because it is a very time-consuming process to wrap up an estate. Woman signing paperwork naming an executor to her estate.

Some of the steps that you take now can make things much easier for your executor and by association, your heirs. The first thing to do is update your trust beneficiary and will designations.

One of the best things you can do for your executor is to leave behind documents that truly reflect your wishes and are easily found after you pass away. Make sure that all beneficiary forms for your retirement accounts, life insurance policies and payable on death designations are fully updated. Be sure that if you’ve created a living trust that all of the relevant assets have been funded inside of it. An executor must also be able to find the documents that you have left behind.

There are legal and financial documents that almost everyone will have or need and these should be organized in one safe place. This can include vehicle titles, birth certificates, divorce decrees, marriage certificates, military discharge paperwork, property tax records, social security records, trust documents, brokerage statements, insurance policies and deeds to real estate.

Where possible, make the extra step to introduce your executor to your professional advisors, such as your life insurance company, brokerage company, bank, and home and auto insurance company. Ensure that some cash is accessible so that your executor can take action sooner rather than later.

Need more help with your estate plan? Set up a time to talk to our law firm about your estate planning program.

 

 

Notebook on desk with the words Estate Planning written. Represents a proactive approach to estate planning.

Why Being Proactive Is Important for Estate & Elder Planning

You know that you need to create an estate and finding a way to craft these documents will not only give you peace of mind but makes things easier for your loved ones. But if you haven’t taken the steps already to put your estate plan into writing, you could be leaving your loved ones to deal with the difficult task of having to wait for the court to process your probated estate.Notebook on desk with the words Estate Planning written. Represents a proactive approach to estate planning.

The court becomes empowered to make decisions on your behalf if you don’t take the proactive step of estate planning. Being proactive in terms of organizing your estate means not waiting until you have been diagnosed with a terminal illness or passed retirement age. The best estate plans are those that are established in early adulthood and revised every five years or each time that a major life event occurs.

A knowledgeable estate planner should be engaged to craft your comprehensive estate plan. An estate planner will look at many different aspects of your personal goals and the strategies and tactics available to you.

They will mesh the goals that you want to achieve, the legacy that you intend to leave behind to your loved ones and charities you wish to support and the steps that are necessary to get there. Scheduling a consultation now with an estate planning attorney assures that if something were to happen to you or if you were to become suddenly incapacitated that there are plans in place to protect your loved ones.

As you approach older ages, you need to think carefully about how you’ll protect your own interests as well as those of your beneficiaries. Our New Hampshire and Maine estate planning law office is here to support you.

Elderly couple discussing a neurological condition with their attorney

Why Those with Neurological Conditions Need Estate Planning

People of all ages and backgrounds can benefit from the process of estate planning. As an elder law practice, we often help people who are approaching retirement age or looking a few years into the future.

But for anyone who suffers from a serious neurological condition, it is even more important to schedule a consultation with an estate planning attorney to discuss your next steps right away. There are unique considerations in elder law to take into account when you have a loved one recently diagnosed with a neurological condition.Elderly couple discussing a neurological condition with their attorney

Neurological conditions can get worse over time, making it difficult for you to make decisions on your own or to be classified as legally incompetent.

All planning and documents for anyone diagnosed with a neurological condition need to be tailored specifically to you. Your planning must reflect your personal experience within that condition and the possibility that it might get worse over time. Consider some of the following aspects when deciding what to incorporate with regards to an elderly neurological condition:

  • Your current status.
  • The rate of progression or rate of anticipated recovery.
  • Future prognosis.

All of these issues should be taken into consideration by you and your estate planning lawyer when discussing your next steps to protect your interests and to ensure that you have necessary documents in place should you become incapacitated.

Power of attorney documents and decisions regarding your health care should be discussed in advance so that your loved ones do not have the added stress of having to go through court and have someone appointed to make these decisions on your behalf. If you have specific wishes surrounding your health care or who will step in to manage your finances, decide that now in the event that your brain based neurological condition gets more severe.

Our Dover, NH estate planning office is here to help you get your documents in order and to discuss your concerns when your spouse or family member has been diagnosed with a neurological issue.