Advanced Estate Planning
Planning for Children
Your Will has three main functions: to name an Executor (or Personal Representative) to manage the estate, to designate Beneficiaries of the estate and to nominate a Guardian for any minor children.
Power of Attorney
Your Durable General Power-of-Attorney gives your Agent broad powers to sign your name for you on legal and financial documents for your life, even if you become incapacitated.
Health Care Documents
Health Care Power
Your Health Care Power of Attorney designates your chosen agents for making medical decisions in the event of your incapacity. It is particularly useful for clarifying which family member is the chosen spokesperson and for waiving burdensome medical privacy restrictions for the family
Advance Medical Directive or ‘Living Will’
Your Living Will express your wishes for treatment in the event you are terminal., incurable, and incompetent, or in persistent vegetative state
Coordinating Beneficiaries with Will
The named beneficiaries of your Life Insurance, Retirement Plan, and other beneficiary-designated assets must be reviewed to make sure all your assets pass to your intended beneficiaries.
The process in which a court supervises the transfer of legal title to property from a decedent to his or her other heirs or beneficiaries after death. The partners of Johnson, Gasink & Baxter, LLP can help Executors and Personal Representatives navigate the Probate process as Counsel to the Estate.
The process in which your Trustee follows your instructions (as left in your Trust) to distribute or manage your property after your death. The partners of Johnson, Gasink & Baxter, LLP are ready to help Successor Trustees for the trusts they created and for any other Trust in need of counsel.
Estate Tax Returns (706)
When required by Federal Law, the Estate Tax Return (IRS Form 706) is a daunting and difficult document. We can help you prepare the return and to make the difficult legal decisions that accompany filing.
Revocable Living Trusts
A Revocable Living Trust (RLT) is an Estate Plan in which you leave instructions for your Trustee (often a family member) to care for you in life and your beneficiaries after death. Many people prefer RLT based plans because they work without court intervention (unlike Wills, which must be Probated) and therefore can cost far less in administrative fees while keeping your affairs private. You can be your own Trustee while you are alive and have the capacity to do so. Your friends or family members may be named as the Trustee of your trust, which would allow them to make financial decisions on your part during your lifetime, as well as distribute your assets after your death. A Revocable Living Trust is an Estate Planning trust established by an individual, or a married couple, that becomes effective immediately upon establishment while the Trustor is still alive (thus "Living"), remains revocable and amendable during the lifetime of the Trustor (thus "Revocable"), and is used to (1) avoid probate; (2) facilitate some tax planning; (3) provide for management during periods of incapacity without need for guardianship or conservatorship; (4) address family circumstances; and (5) provide for ultimate distribution of the estate
Every Revocable Living Trust should be signed with a back-up will called a 'Pour-over Will.' Upon your death, this will tells the court to pay any assets remaining in your estate into the Trust This 'pour over of assets from Probate to your Trust is where this document gets its name. Unlike traditional wills, a pour-over keeps the your beneficiaries' information private.
A Living Trust must be funded in life to be fully effective. To 'fund' a Trust is to Re-register your assets in the name of the Trustee of the Trust and coordinating your beneficiary appropriately with the same. Your Trust does not need to be updated as your accounts change in life.