Estate Planning

Nearly everyone will agree that it is important to take care of your Estate Planning needs before it is too late, but few will actually do so. Whether it is because people are uncomfortable discussing the subject of what will happen after they pass away, or if it is because they simply think they are too busy for it, they just never seem to get around to sitting down to work out an effective and comprehensive estate plan.

Sanchez Law Group, P.A. has a strong dedication to helping our clients meet the specific challenges that arise in Estate Planning. We value our clients’ time and money, which is why our clients can always expect honest, straightforward advice and an emphasis on strategies and tactics designed to meet their goals affordably. The firm’s clients get personal attention, experienced counsel, and skilled representation in various transactional areas of Trust and Estates, which include:

A Power of Attorney allows you to designate authority to another, granting that person the right to act on behalf of you. What authority is granted depends on the specific language of the Power of Attorney. You can make a Power of Attorney very broad or can limit the Power of Attorney to certain specific acts. The right to act is based on fiduciary circumstances. This document cannot be signed by an incompetent person so a Power of Attorney saves thousands of dollars so guardianship can be avoided.

Two types of Power of Attorney: Limited Power of Attorney and General Power of Attorney. A limited or special power of attorney does not have all powers. For example, you can designate someone with the power to conduct a real estate sale of your property. A general power of attorney governs all financial powers covered by a power of attorney. However, the specific language of a power granted will depend on the decisions outlined in the signed document.

Contact Sanchez Law Group if you want a Power of Attorney in lieu of avoiding the establishment of guardianship later.

A Health Care Surrogate document allows you to designate a person to make health care decisions if you are unable to make those decisions. The identified surrogate has no authority to act until such time as you are deemed to be incompetent to make informed healthcare decisions. This document is limited to health care, unlike the power of attorneys.

Establishing a Health Care Surrogate will give you peace of mind knowing that a trusted person will be able to make healthcare decisions on your behalf when you cannot and without the need for the establishment of guardianship. Guardianship will cost your family thousands of dollars, while a Health Care Surrogate document will cost you a few hundred dollars. Contact us now to set one up for you.

A Living Will specifies your wishes as to the provision or termination of medical procedures when you have a terminal condition. If you are unable to understand or unable to communicate with their doctors, your living will is a legally enforceable method of making sure your wishes are still honored.

Avoid people making decisions for you; you know what you want, so establish a Living Will so that medical providers and your family know what to do. Contact us today to prepare your Living Will.

The effect of putting an asset into the living trust is that it changes the title to the asset for legal purposes. Instead of the asset being in your individual name, now it will be under the name of your living trust. While you are alive, you and the living trusts are one and the same.

A Florida revocable living trust must have a trustee at all times. The trustee is the person in charge of administering the trust. During your lifetime, you will usually be your own trustee unless you designate someone else. Upon your incapacity or death, then you must designate a successor trustee to administer the trust on your behalf, and your trust becomes irrevocable. The trustee in Florida has a fiduciary duty to you. To administer the trust according to the provisions of the trust and to follow your intent and your wishes as much as reasonably possible. If the trustee fails to abide by these requirements, he may be liable to you or the beneficiaries for breaching his or her fiduciary duties.

There are 5 main purposes of a Florida revocable living trust: 1) avoid probate court; 2) avoid guardianship court; 3) give you control after death; 4) avoid guardianship court for minor children; and 5) asset protection for your beneficiaries.

Setting up a trust has important benefits and can save your family thousands of dollars. Contact Sanchez Law Group to discuss the establishment of a trust.

When you die without a will or other estate plan, state laws known as intestate succession laws decide which family members will inherit your estate and in what proportion.

Most people want to distribute their property differently than the state would distribute it. For example, many people want to leave gifts to friends, neighbors, girlfriends, boyfriends, schools, or charitable organizations—and intestate succession does not allow for any of that. If you want other people or organizations to inherit some of your property, or if you want to decide the proportions of your gifts, a will can make sure your wishes are followed.

Also, you can include, and are not limited to, the following in a Will:
• Name an Executor to Wrap Up Your Estate
• Name Guardians for Your Children and Their Property
• Create Trusts for Your Children or Other Young Beneficiaries

One main difference between a Will and a Revocable Trust is that a Will goes into effect only after you die, while a Revocable Trust takes effect as soon as you create it. A Will is a document that directs who will receive your property at your death, and it appoints a legal representative to carry out your wishes. By contrast, a Trust can be used to begin distributing property before death, at death, or afterward.

A Trust is a legal arrangement through which one person or institution is called a "trustee," who holds legal title to the property for another person, called a "beneficiary." A trust usually has two types of beneficiaries -- one set that receives income from the Trust during their lives and another set that receives whatever is left over after the first set of beneficiaries dies.

Setting up your estate the way you want should be important to you. Take control now and contact us so that your assets are devised in the manner you wish for them to be devised.

There are different types of deeds that can be established. When discussing Estate Planning with a client, we often times discuss a Ladybird Deed. With a Florida Lady Bird Deed, you retain an enhanced life estate, not just a regular life estate. That means you maintain complete control over the property during your life and can elect to do what you wish with the property. A person cannot use a lady bird deed to disinherit a spouse or minor child.

Normally property is owned as fee simple, which means the entire ownership and control of the property is in your name. When someone is given an enhanced life estate, that fee simple interest splits into two: (1) the life estate and (2) the remainder. You will own the life estate, and the other person you want to designate will own the property upon your death (i.e., the remainder).

Basically, with a ladybird deed, you own the property during your life. The owner of the remainder (called a remainderman) owns the property upon your death. If, during your lifetime, you elect to sell the property, you can sell the property and can keep all proceeds.

Contact Sanchez Law Group to prepare your deed so that your family can avoid probate upon your death saving them thousands of dollars.

Put an Estate Planning in Place

Estate Planning is not only for the wealthy who have vast assets to pass on from generation to generation. Estate Planning allows people to plan for their bank accounts, medical issues, real and personal property, identifying trusted people to make decisions on your behalf, and the like. It also allows our clients’ loved ones to enjoy the benefits of their generosity and that the grieving family members are not forced to wait out the lengthy and often costly process of probate.

By putting an estate plan into place now, you can protect your estate from the claims of creditors through strategic probate avoidance; you can ensure that your assets are distributed according to your wishes and shield your loved ones from potential quarrels and legal conflicts. If you do nothing and die without a Will or Trust, your estate will be distributed according to state law. This may result in your family receiving less than they otherwise could; therefore, the benefits of an estate plan cannot be underestimated.

Our law firm understands how to provide comprehensive and thoughtful service for our clients. Having spent many years working with other attorneys, our lawyer has taken the best-observed practices and incorporated them into the service you will receive at our firm.

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Plan for the Future Today Starting with a Free Consultation.

Take action now by contacting us for a free evaluation so that our estate planning lawyer can review your situation and advise you of your options. Whether you choose to have us prepare a Will, establish a Trust, and/or set up a Health Care Surrogate, you will be able to enjoy the peace of mind that comes with knowing that you have provided for yourself and potentially spared your loved ones a considerable amount of stress and difficulty with the disposition of your estate.

Almost as bad is using the tear-out forms from a do-it-yourself book on estate planning, a cookie-cutter approach that simply does not take into account the intricacies of an individually tailored plan. Don’t wait another moment before contacting Sanchez Law Group, P.A for free consultation to discuss your unique situation and to learn about strategies that we can use to help you.