Estate Planning

Basic estate planning documents in Florida include: 

  • A Last Will and Testament, to leave your assets to specific beneficiaries and name your personal representative (person in charge of your estate when you pass)
  • A Durable Power of Attorney for Finances, to name someone to take care of your finances if it’s ever necessary while you are still competent or should you ever become incompetent. 
  • A Living Will, to effectuate your wishes for end-of-life medical care, and 
  • A Designation of Health Care Surrogate, to appoint an agent to make sure your health care wishes are honored. 

Trusts which may help avoid probate:

1. Living Trust:

A trust is an arrangement under which one person, called a trustee, holds legal title to property for another person, called a beneficiary. This trust can be made while you are still alive and can be amended throughout the course of your life.  You can be the trustee of your own living trust, keeping full control over all property held in trust. Upon your death, the assets held in the trust will be distributed to the beneficiaries according to the terms of the living trust. A living trust becomes irrevocable at the time of death and cannot be changed once the person who made the trust passes away. 

2. Irrevocable Trusts:

After you place property into an irrevocable trust, that property now belongs to the trust and not to the grantor. The grantor, having transferred assets into the trust, effectively removes all of his or her rights of ownership to the assets and the trust. 

 

Please contact Attorney Alvarez to determine if a trust is right for you. 

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