Rolla, MO Estate Planning Lawyers Help Secure Your Future
Knowledgeable attorneys protect your wealth for retirement and transfer to your heirs
“The days are long, but the years are short” is a saying that strikes a chord with many people. It also serves as a reminder that it is never too early to start estate planning so that your intentions and loved ones are protected. At Williams, Robinson, Rigler & Buschjost, P.C. in Rolla, we know it’s sometimes difficult to discuss issues of what will happen when we pass. With skill and sensitivity, our South-Central Missouri estate planning attorneys create an environment where you can comfortably discuss your plans for retirement and your goals for your legacy. We make the task of estate planning easy and deliver results that add to your security now and in the future.
Benefits of a comprehensive estate plan
The point of estate planning is to maximize protection for your wealth so you can enjoy it more fully, then pass more of it on to your heirs at the appropriate time. With a comprehensive estate plan, you guard against claims from creditors and lawsuits, prepare for the infirmities of old age, and make your intentions known regarding what happens to your hard-earned wealth after you pass. Once you have a solid estate plan in place, you can prepare for retirement with increased peace of mind.
Essential elements of a successful estate plan
A successful estate plan consists of legal instruments that protect against a wide array of life’s possibilities and inevitabilities. Some of the pieces you might put in place for your plan are:
- Last will and testament — Every adult should have a will. This is your final statement of affection to your loved ones as well as a means of conveyance for transferring wealth to your heirs. If you do not execute a valid will, your wealth passes to your heirs according to Missouri’s inheritance laws, which can produce different results than you would have chosen.
- Living will — Also known as an advance directive, this is a written statement of your preferences regarding medical treatment in case you become incapacitated. You can state how much life-saving intervention you are comfortable receiving and name someone to make medical decisions for you.
- Powers of attorney — These instruments voluntarily transfer legal authority from you, the principal, to another person, your agent. Your agent can then act in your name on matters such as your finances or healthcare decisions. Powers of attorney are vital for older adults who no longer have the capacity to run their businesses or personal affairs.
- Living trust — To protect your assets from creditors, liability and taxation, you can create a living trust, which is a legal entity that assumes ownership of your assets. You can enjoy your wealth during your lifetime, then the trust transfers that wealth to your heirs upon your passing. A trust is superior to a will because it avoids probate so beneficiaries can receive property immediately. A trust can also prevent your estate from triggering the federal estate tax and allow you to leave more of your wealth to your loved ones. Finally, you can leave conditions on a gift in a trust that you couldn’t if you passed the asset on through your will.
- Guardianship — If you have minor children, you should consider naming a guardian in your will. Such an assignment is not automatic; your choice of guardian must obtain court approval. However, the court gives great deference to a parent’s request when making the decision.
Estate planning is a very personal process. Our attorneys tailor solutions to your particular circumstances so you can achieve your goals in the short term and for the distant future.
For personalized and highly professional estate planning services, call our Rolla law firm today
Williams, Robinson, Rigler & Buschjost, P.C. in Rolla provides comprehensive estate planning services for clients throughout South-Central Missouri. To schedule an appointment, call 573-458-5200 or contact us online.