Every adult should put together -- at the very least -- a basic estate plan. At its most basic, an estate plan will be made up of a simple will. Fortunately, these documents are easy to create and most California residents will be able to type one up in no time.
Like it or not, the average California family might not get along very well when it comes to dividing the estate of a deceased loved one. The more money and assets are involved, the more chance there will be of family disagreements. Unfortunately, the average person will greatly underestimate their family's capacity for infighting and disagreement. It is vital to never forget this danger and to do everything possible during estate planning to ensure that the chance of bitterness, jealousy and fighting is reduced to the absolute minimum.
An investigative journalist, who authored a biography about Whitney Houston and her recently incapacitated daughter, Bobbi Kristina Brown, claimed that Bobbi received an inheritance of $20 million from her mother and it would be paid out in a series of installments. Reportedly, Bobbi Brown received one of those installments when she turned 21. She is currently 22 years of age and on life support.
California residents may be interested in some of the reasons that they should update their estate plan regularly. Due to changing circumstances, the provisions in a standing estate plan may become out of date over time.
In a survey of 513 business owners, it was found that only 70 percent of them have an estate plan. To qualify as having an estate plan, the business owner must have had at least a valid will. Among those who didn't have at least a will, some said that they weren't ready to face their deaths. Others said that they didn't see a need for an estate plan.
When people turn 18, their parents no longer have the legal right to make important decisions regarding their healthcare or to have access to their health information. Accidents and serious illnesses can happen no matter how young or old a person may be, and it is important that those over 18 have documents in place to let their loved ones know how they want important medical decisions handled on their behalf.
California residents may have estate plans in place, but it is important to consider changing a will if certain life events occur. It may be easy to overlook such a need due to the activity surrounding some of those events. However, failing to change the conditions in a will may result in unanticipated consequences after one's death.
In a time in which medical and scientific advances have progressed to a degree in which those near death and incapacitated in California can have their lives artificially sustained for long periods of time, living wills can be an important tool to have in place. Many people are uncomfortable with the thought of potentially spending years hooked up to machines when they are incapacitated, choosing rather to select the types of care they are willing to receive and noting the ones they wish to forgo.
California residents might be interested in a recent article about whether a will or a revocable trust is the better choice in estate planning. The article says that before deciding what process to use, an individual should consider the people and entities that will receive those assets.
California couples who are planning their will may be wondering if a bypass trust might benefit their situation. Bypass trust works as a tool to limit the amount that a married couple's estate is taxed after the death of one party. Furthermore, property in the form of a bypass trust may not subject to estate taxes.