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Middle-Class Estate Planning

Wilson C. Pasley Says Estate Planning Isn’t Just for the Wealthy

Middle-class estate planning is just as crucial as it is for the wealthy. When a billionaire loses 50% of his wealth in a divorce, they’re still rich. However, middle-class people could risk their retirement when they haven’t planned for long-term health care or estate distribution. Forbes Magazine explains “why estate planners aren’t just for the ultra-rich.”  While middle-class people can complicate estate plans for larger estates, they can benefit just about everyone. This month, we will explain what middle-class people need for estate planning.

Wilson C. Pasley, PLC Attorney at Law, is proud to support our middle-class clients with estate planning. To start, we will explain some helpful tips for middle-class families to follow. Then, we will talk about how to overcome many myths about planning for estates. In closing, we will talk about how to solidify your estate plan.

Here’s How Middle-Class Clients Can Tackle Estate Planning

Aside from the estate tax, there are several estate planning concerns for middle-class people to handle. One obvious concern is wills, but there are other beneficial avenues for middle-income families to take. Here are some tips that middle-class families can follow to properly plan for an estate:

Property Transfer at Death

A will covers the “who” when it comes to receiving property. Financial advisors can help with the “how.” A financial advisor can assist with items such as real estate. Selling real estate alters one’s financial picture heading into retirement. Giving away real estate can trigger gift taxes.

Powers of Attorney

Clients are often reluctant to relinquish power over personal medical decisions until it becomes necessary. Doing so opens up an opportunity for advisors to help. After all, no one wants to make these decisions when they’re on a feeding tube.

Establishing a Trust

Middle-class families can choose from various types of trust — revocable, living, etc. Even if clients don’t want to establish a trust, a financial advisor can show them the ropes. It’s imperative to go into establishing a fully-prepared when planning estate distribution.

Managing Life Insurance

Most life insurance decisions happen independently or with the help of an insurance broker. If clients have already invested in life insurance, a financial advisor can provide guidance.

It’s Crucial to Understand Estate Planning and Trusts Myths

There are a few common misconceptions people have about estate planning and trusts. Before planning your estate, it’s essential to understand these situations. Here are some common myths and how you can overcome them:

Myth #1: Trusts are cost-prohibitive for the non-wealthy

Reality: Drafting, implementing, and maintaining trusts are no longer cost-prohibitive. The use of computer technology, increased competition, and expansion of trust planning has lowered these costs. Firms can tailor their services to meet the market needs without a minimum account balance.

Myth 2: I am going to leave everything to my spouse, so I don’t need a trust

Families created by second (or later) marriages can cause hurdles in planning. Trust and estate planning can remedy this situation. A little ‘re-education” can help clients make the right decisions for planning your estate. Seek the help of a financial advisor to make this process go smooth.

Trusts Can Protect Your Assets When Solidifying Your Estate Plan

Everyone has heard of stories of people who passed away without finalizing their estate plan. Let’s take a look at how a trust can help solidify your middle-class estate plan:

Living Trusts Can Avoid Probate

Avoiding probate is a significant benefit of living trusts. Probate is the court process that determines the distribution of assets after one’s death. Because the property of the trust is “owned” by the creator, it gets passed along to the listed beneficiaries. This process takes a few weeks, while probate takes months. It also doesn’t result in additional costs compared to probate.

Trusts Can Remain Private

Unlike wills, trusts can remain out of the public eye. Wills go through probate and eventually become part of the public record. Since trusts avoid probate, their distribution details remain private.

Obtain Legal Counsel When Working On Estate Planning

Despite there being several online resources for independent assisting, seeking help from an attorney is best. These tools often vary and may not meet your needs. A poorly drafted estate plan can cost more in the long term. Please speak with our law firm today to ensure your plan is what you want it to be.

Wilson C. Pasley PLC Attorney at Law Can Solidify Your Estate Planning

Our law firm has helped residents in and around Roanoke, VA, with estate planning matters. Wilson C. Pasley, PLC Attorney at Law, brings over ten years of experience to each estate planning matter. Attorney Pasley has developed a solid reputation throughout the region to get our clients what they need.

Beyond estate planning, Wilson C. Pasley, PLC Attorney at Law, assists with family law, criminal defense, bankruptcy, and business law. If you have trouble navigating your estate plan, you can trust our law firm for professional legal representation. Our convenient location on Franklin Road allows us to work with clients throughout the region. To learn more about our estate planning services, contact us today.

For more information, call Wilson C. Pasley, PLC Attorney at Law, at (540) 366-1545. Follow us on Facebook for updates and advice on legal matters. We are happy to discuss more about middle-class estate planning.