Dothan, AL Law Blog

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Welcome to the Reginald A. Rhodes, P.C. Blog

Estate planning and why it is a must...

What Is Estate Planning?

This is a question everyone should be asking themselves, yet unfortunately many don't and it is a sad situation when someone passes away without one.  Death is something that is not a matter of "if" this happens, but "when" this happens.

Estate Planning is for everyone.   

However, if you don't have one, don't worry because your State will have one for you, although you probably won't like it.  No matter how small or large your estate need a plan.

An Estate Plan begins with a Will or Living Trust.

So often we hear, "but I have a Will.  I don't need anything else."  Many people believe that if they have a Will, that they do not have to go through the Probate process.  That is NOT correct!  For a Will to be enforced, it MUST go through the Probate process.  Probate can be a lengthy and expensive process and the cost to Probate varies from state to state.  The time it takes to Probate a Will can range from 6 months to 2 years and the cost can range from 5% to 8% of the value of the estate.  If you want to avoid the process of Probate and the headaches, time and cost that come with it, a Revocable Living Trust is what you seek.  With a Revocable Living Trust, not only do you avoid Probate, but more of your money goes to your beneficiaries and less goes to the Court and the Attorneys.

What is a Revocable Living Trust?   In short a Trust is a tool to help your estate avoid probate and it still lets you dictate who gets what when you pass away.  With a Trust your family will still have access to your bank account, real estate, and other valuables with no delay as opposed to the years it could take going through Probate Court.  There are many benefits of a Trust.  Another of which is being able to appoint someone to manage the Trust and you can change it anytime you want.  However, keep in mind that a Trust is only effective if it's done right. 

The benefit of having an Estate Plan.

The benefit is that it will help you organize your records and correct titles and beneficiary designations.

Estate Planning doesn't have to be expensive. 

 If you think you can't afford a complex estate plan now, then start with what you can afford.  Estate Plans don't have to be lengthy and you don't have to have a large estate to do an estate plan.

When do I need to do an Estate Plan? 

The best time to do an Estate Plan is now.  Prepare your plan when times are good so as to avoid having to do it when times are not so good.  This is one of the most thoughtful and considerate things you can do for those you love, thereby giving you peace of mind. 

Let us help you create the perfect Estate Plan for you and your family. 

Law Office of Reginald A. Rhodes can help you with all your Estate Planning needs.  Please contact us at 334-792-6213, 214 Perry Avenue, Dothan, AL 36303.

Alabama state law requires the following:  No representation is made that the quality of legal services provided is greater than the quality of legal services provided by other lawyers.

Reginald A. Rhodes, JD, LL.M. has an office in Dothan, AL and serves clients nationwide.

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214 Perry Avenue, Dothan, AL 36303
| Phone: 334-792-6213

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