RESOURCE: Estate Planning/Asset Protection Rules

A BAKER’S DOZEN

  1. IDENTIFY all of your ASSETS/LIABILITIES to plan for the future.  Include life insurance and retirement accounts to determine your asset picture.
  2. ANALYZE TITLE to your property:  how is it owned? individual, joint tenancy (if so, with whom? spouse, child, relative, friend).  There are implications for asset protection as well as taxes.
  3. DEVELOP A LIFE PLAN based upon age, family, and personal goals and include retirement and its costs.
  4. RECOGNIZE THAT RETIREMENT PLANNING includes not only how much to save but when to take it out because the government’s rules penalize not only too much but too late when making withdrawals.
  5. PREPARE an estate plan.  DEFINE GOALS, IDENTIFY BENEFICIARIES to insure that they are the recipients if something should happen.  IF YOU DO NOT DO THIS, the state determines who gets what.
  6. EXECUTE A WILL AND, IN SOME CASES, A LIVING TRUST to insure that your wishes are carried out.
  7. REMEMBER that A WILL CAN BE USED TO APPOINT GUARDIANS/TRUSTEES FOR MINOR CHILDREN and also becomes an asset protection device for protection of resources for DISABLED INDIVIDUALS.
  8. INCLUDE ESTATE TAX PLANNING TECHNIQUES if assets are more than $1,000,000.00. 
  9. ANTICIPATE the possibility of disability through insurance planning as well as execution of a DURABLE POWER OF ATTORNEY FOR FINANCIAL AFFAIRS.
  10. ADDRESS health care not only with insurance planning but also with APPOINTMENT OF A HEALTH CARE AGENT to make decisions in the event of temporary or permanent disability.
  11. EXPECT that you will be affected by the fact that, in general, this society is living longer which may pose personal challenges in providing love, care, and understanding for aging loved ones.
  12. REVIEW YOUR PLAN(S) PERIODICALLY.
  13. FOLLOW YOUR BLISS !!!!!!!!