A Chicago Estate Planning Attorney Helps With Wills, Trusts, and Estates
Estate planning doesn’t need to be a harrowing and stressful experience. However, it is important you make sure your wishes are followed after death rather than leaving these important decisions to others. Furthermore, you can spare your family the unnecessary expenses and delays that come with unplanned distributions. Peace of mind is invaluable, and Cameron and Kane LLC is available to help you reach yours.
Estate Planning in Chicago
The important staple estate planning documents in Illinois include at least:
- A will or trust that will explain how your assets are distributed and name your executor.
- A financial durable power of attorney, to name someone to take care of your finances if necessary.
- A health care durable power of attorney, to name someone to ensure your health care wishes are honored.
- A living will, known in Illinois as a declaration, to set out your end-of-life wishes.
If you live in Illinois, as is the case in most states, you should also consider avoiding probate.
Most estate advisors prioritize avoiding probate. Probate is a post-death court proceeding that authorizes your executor to pay your bills and transfer your assets to the people who are judged to inherit them through any number of estate mechanisms. Unfortunately, probate is commonly time-consuming and expensive. On the other hand, probate can be avoided with other estate mechanisms, such as a living trust, as long as you set up these mechanisms during your lifetime. After your death, your family won’t be able to avoid probate.
What is a Will?
A will is a legal document that controls the distribution of your assets and may also appoint guardians for minor children after your death. A will commonly include:
- A designation of your executor, who is charged with carrying out the provisions of your will.
- A designation of your beneficiaries, who will inherit your assets.
- Instructions for how and when your assets will be distributed to your beneficiaries.
- A designation of guardians for your minor children.
What is a Trust?
A trust is perhaps the most essential tool in a well-crafted estate plan that helps minimize estate taxes. More specifically, a trust is a fiduciary arrangement that allows a trustee to hold assets on behalf of your beneficiaries. Trusts are quite flexible and can specify exactly how and when the assets pass to the beneficiaries.
What is an Estate?
An estate represents a valuation of all your assets. Your assets would include things such as your net worth, including everything of value that you own, such as your physical and intangible assets like your land, home, furnishing, investments, collectibles, and accumulated work benefits, such as company stock or 401Ks. Your estate includes everything that will be distributed to your beneficiaries.
Let a Chicago Estate Planning Attorney at Cameron and Kane LLC Assist You
A well-thought-out and detailed estate plan will allow you to designate exactly how and when your assets will be distributed upon your death. An experienced Chicago estate planning attorney at Cameron and Kane LLC can help you understand all aspects of estate planning and help you choose the best options for your unique and particular circumstances. Everybody’s situation is different, and an effective estate plan should be tailored specifically for you. It’s important to avoid the one-size-fits-all templates that can be found online. Contact us today for your free consultation.