JEANNE E. MORRIS
Twin Cities Lawyer
AREAS OF PRACTICE
ESTATE PLANNING OVERVIEW
The basic objectives of an estate plan is to provide for medical decision-making if you are incapacitated, and for the management and distribution of your assets in the event of your incapacity or death.
Without a valid health care directive and financial power of attorney, your disability or incapacity may require a guardian or conservator to be appointed in a public probate court proceeding to manage your medical decision-making and financial affairs. By signing these two important forms, you will decide who manages your medical decision-making and give that person some direction.
A revocable trust may be used instead of a Will to allow for private asset management and estate administration without a probate proceeding. You can alter, amend or revoke your trust at any time prior to death. While you are alive and have legal capacity, you have complete control over your trust assets. The assets are treated as if they are in your name for income tax purposes. You can add additional assets to the trust or take assets out of the trust at any time. I will help you re-title assets and name death beneficiaries so that your assets pass to beneficiaries according to your wishes.
If you would benefit from estate tax planning, the trust can provide that upon the first death of a married couple a family trust is established and funded with certain assets of the deceased spouse. I will assist you in determining if a family trust will benefit you.