Whitney Mediation & Legal Counsel, LLC

Legacy Planning

family

Peace, Protection & Prosperity for Your Loved Ones

Creating a legacy plan is an investment that will greatly benefit those you love most. It is a selfless gift that serves  your loved ones by documenting the following before you no longer can:

  1. what will happen to you, your posterity, and your property if you become ill or pass away;
  2. how will your property be used to help those you love when you are unable to decide this yourself; and
  3. what legacy, beyond your assets, will you leave your loved ones.

Three Reasons to plan Your legacy and Ensure It is Complete and Up-to-Date:

1.   Passing on Your Financial Legacy

  • With a Will:
    • Minimize family stress, conflicts, and lawsuits due to uncertainty and confusion about your wishes.
    • Name guardians for children. You can prevent significant probate time and costs by designating a guardian for your minor beneficiaries before it’s too late. 
    • Control where your assets will go when you pass so they benefit those who who need them most when they are most ready for it.
  • With a Trust:
    • Avoid probate costs and delay. Wills do not avoid probate.  Many people know they want to avoid probate court due to probate horror stories of media, neighbors and friends.   
    • Minimize taxes. Protecting your beneficiaries from losing your assets to taxes is a valuable reason to plan your legacy.
    • Preserve and protect assets for retirement and emergencies. Special trusts can protect assets from creditors, predators, divorce, emergencies, lawsuits, addictions, and long-term care costs and refusal of Medicaid benefits.

 2.   Preparing for Emergencies

  • Decide who will manage your financial affairs if you can’t.
  • Protect your minor dependents from state custody and foster care.
  • Determine who will make healthcare decisions for you and your dependents if you can’t.
  • Document the type of care you want if you can’t communicate your needs.

3.   Sharing Your Personal Legacy

  • Have guardians you trust in place to care for your minor children or grandchildren, if you can’t do so.
  • Record, protect and share cherished values and messages to help your loved ones enjoy happy, fulfilled lives.

How to Begin Your Legacy Planning

Do-it-yourself documents (e.g., Wills) generally are not full legacy plans and are inadequate for various reasons:

  1. Essential documents may be ignored,
  2. Wrong wording may change the meaning of your documents,
  3. Laws affecting estate documents change regularly,
  4. Failure to follow legal formalities will invalidate estate documents, and
  5. The basic clauses in these documents usually fail to cover many of the circumstances in which you and your family need a solid legacy plan.

The most important step in legacy planning is finding the right expert to help you.

A good estate planner will coach you through dozens of choices to create a personalized plan for you. The best way to ensure that your plan will succeed is to hire an expert who understands your unique situation and goals. Legacy planning is personal and complicated enough without trying to do it alone or with the help of someone you cannot trust or who is just not a good fit for you.

To select a legacy planner whom you trust, start by creating clear criteria to evaluate candidates. Then prepare specific questions to determine how well they meet your criteria. Then contact a few legacy planners to see how well they meet your criteria. Some questions you may consider asking include:

  • Why do they practice legacy planning?
  • How much experience do they have specifically in legacy planning?
  • How much of their work is focused solely on legacy planning?
  • What is their usual planning process?
  • Do they believe they can provide you with the best service possible? Why?

Why Whitney Counsel

Whitney Counsel provides flat-fee, high-value options for You whenever possible, so You know exactly what You will receive and what You will pay before engaging the firm. Flat fee packages also enable You to contact Whitney Counsel at any time without worrying about getting billed for getting the help you need whenever you need it.

In addition to providing you with expert counsel on critical decisions to meet Your goals, Denton will focus on helping you:

  • Follow through with Your plans fully so they really work for you and your loved ones.
  • Manage and deter conflicts and potential disputes among your beneficiaries.
  • Connect more meaningfully with those who matter most to You.

To find out whether Whitney Counsel may be able to provide you with the legacy planning you deserve, review past clients’ feedback on the value of Denton’s legacy planning or call or email Denton today.