Everyone wants their heirs and beneficiaries to get as much money as possible when they pass away. They've worked hard for that money and assets that they've accumulated, and they want to see it continue to be used for good and for the benefit of their family.
Some Californians live on top of gas and oil. If these valuable resources are in the ground under your property, you may be getting some nice royalty income on a regular basis. Even if you sell your home, you can retain the rights to what is underneath it.
As a young adult, you have a lot of new responsibilities. You might think that you have everything covered, but have you made an estate plan? An estate plan is an important part of being an adult, especially if you have a spouse and children, because the estate plan lets those who are left behind know what to do with your assets.
Many Californians are permanent legal residents from countries around the world or are married to someone who is. In the tax world, these people are referred to by the rather un-politically correct term "resident aliens." This is an important term to know when you are developing your estate plan and have a large estate because the taxation rules for non-citizens are different than for citizens.
Politics impacts virtually every aspect of our lives, whether we realize it or not. That's because our elected leaders make and sign the laws by which we all are required to live. The new Trump administration and the Republican-led Congress have indicated that there are a number of areas in which they plan to exert their authority in the near future.
Often, when people do their estate planning, they include their grandchildren only as alternative beneficiaries. That means that they receive an inheritance only if their parent (the grandparent's child) dies before the grandparent. Even if someone dies without a will and has no living children, grandchildren will receive the assets that would have gone to those children.
Virtually every adult, no matter how young and healthy, should have a will and possibly other estate planning documents. An estate plan, even a simple one, can save loved ones time, stress and money if something happens to you.
If there's anything that people dread discussing over family holiday get-togethers more than politics, it's financial issues. However, the holiday season brings family members together who rarely if ever see each other during the rest of the year. Therefore, it is practical time to discuss serious matters like estate plans.
Many Los Angeles area families have a vacation home. It may be a getaway cottage in Big Sur or a place farther north in Napa or Sonoma wine county. Regardless of the location, when people draft their estate plan, they generally leave the property to their children.
When people remarry, they often rewrite their wills to ensure that their new spouses are covered. Unfortunately, their children from previous marriages and relationships may be left without any inheritance, even if that's not what their parents intended.