Monday, October 28, 2013

Take comfort in knowing you have a plan to protect your family and assets

Planning is a part of living.  You plan your vacation, you plan your retirement, and you even plan your day to day activities.  Oddly, even though you don’t plan to have an accident, you probably planned an insurance coverage. All our life, from grade school on, we learn that planning helps us focus and prioritize; it is the basic building block for informed decision making.  Have you taken time to plan your estate? 

We may tend to think estate planning as something “older people” do, but in reality, estate planning is for all age groups.  Take comfort in knowing you have an estate plan.  Here’s why:

  • Creating an estate plan now will avoid the need for conservatorship later.
  • Obtaining a professional in estate planning whom you are comfortable with can give you peace of mind.
  • Maximize your full federal estate tax exemptions available and minimize the amount of time and money you and your family will pay in estate taxes or probate costs (with a Living Trust).
  • Finalize your instructions regarding medical treatment and life support in case you are unable (with Durable Powers of Attorney)
  • Own it? Who do you want to give it to? Organize your thoughts by identifying those personal items as well as any specific bequests you wish to make (with a Last Will and Testament). 
  • Revisit, review, and revise your plan if necessary.  We recommend every 3-5 years.  After all, life changes, so do you!
  • Tools of an estate plan will assure you have done the most important thing that can SAVE YOUR FAMILY THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS.

With more than 30 years of legal expertise, attorney Lynn A. Dean and her knowledgeable staff can help you create an estate plan that will give you comfort in knowing you have done all that you can for you and your loved ones.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Aging Boomers Checklist Helps Plan for Life's "What Ifs"

Lynn A. Dean
Estate Planning Attorney

As noted on the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) website, Seventy-six million American children were born between 1945 and 1964.  Over the last few years these baby boomers have been hitting their mid sixties.  The Aging Boomers continue making record milestones. Now they are known as the fastest growth population bracket.  According to the U.S. Census Bureau projections, the population age 65 and older is expected to more than double between now and 2060, from 43.1 million to 92.0 million!  That said, whether you are one of the millions, or part of the next generation with aging parents and responsibilities of your own, we continue to learn more about how to take control of important matters when life’s eventualities hit.   
Here are some of the important items you can do now so that people can assist you or you are better equipped to assist your loved ones:
1.      Create the following Estate Planning Documents

a.      Revocable Living Trust

b.      Last Will & Testament

c.       General Power of Attorney for Financial & Real Estate Matters

d.      Advanced Health Care Directive

2.      Designate an Agent or choose an advocate (who’s in charge if you cannot be):

a.      Family Member(s)

b.      Financial advisor or attorney

c.       Doctor

3.      Make your Wishes Known as to the following details

a.      Do you want to be placed on Life Support?

b.      Do you wish to be provided Pain Relief?

c.       How do you feel about donation of organs?

d.      What about the disposition of your remains? i.e., funeral / burial arrangements

Equally important is keeping an inventory of your medical insurance carrier, phone numbers, doctor names, medications and contact information of your immediate friends and relatives.  Where are your important documents located? 

For a detailed inventory checklist of your own, visit our web page and Download our complimentary toolkit for the sandwich generation. 

Life is complicated, at the Law office of Lynn A. Dean, we make it easy!

Friday, October 18, 2013

Lynn A. Dean voted “Favorite Attorney” for the 2013 Roseville, Granite Bay, Rocklin & Auburn Readers Choice Awards of Style Magazine.

The Law Office of Lynn A. Dean, specializing in Estate Planning and Elder Law, has earned the accolades and votes of its clients.   In fact, the readers of Style Magazine have voted her their favorite attorney for 3 consecutive years!   

So what makes this law firm stand apart from all the others? Why has the Law Office of Lynn A. Dean become increasingly successful and grown during a down economy?

“Life is filled with uncertainty and clients of all ages want to ensure that their loved ones will be well cared for with the right estate plan. The reality is that this area of the law is becoming increasingly complex and a misstep can prove devastating,” explained Lynn Dean.  For more than 18 years Attorney Lynn Dean supported by her capable team, has helped hundreds of clients to make the right choices for themselves and their families.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

You Did an Estate Plan Years Ago – No Worries, right? Maybe Not.

Lynn A. Dean
Estate Planning can be complicated, but our law firm makes it easy.  Many people believe that if they had an attorney create their estate plan five or more years ago, there is no concern or reason to review their documents.  This can be problematic and the reasons are as unique as you are. 

Some examples are: 

 1)  The Trust was not fully funded or assets have been removed and should be re-titled into the name of the Trust

Since the primary purpose of a revocable living trust is to avoid probate, assets (bank accounts, personal property) should be funded into the trust. This is action required on your part once the trust is created. Often, assets grow or change over the course of time, and even institutions close or merge - have you reviewed your situation? 

2)      Successor trustee unable to carry out responsibility

At the time you created your estate plan, you chose a trusted relative or friend to carry out your wishes.  Over time, people’s lives change and they may no longer be able or available to act on your behalf.  Perhaps the person you selected has financial difficulties themselves and may no longer be the best choice as your trustee.

3)      Spouse or beneficiary change

Have you remarried?  Has your child divorced or had new children? Have your daughters remarried and now have different names?   

At the Law Office of Lynn A. Dean, there is no situation too difficult to preclude an estate planning solution.  We cut through the confusion of estate planning, and counsel you through the process with compassion and expertise.