An Overview of Florida Estate Planning | Rubén J. Padrón, PA

An Overview of Florida Estate Planning

June 2, 2021

Whether you’re a multimillionaire or you’re living a more limited lifestyle, having a good estate plan is key in Miami, FL. Working with an attorney can help you distribute your property, avoid probate and even prepare contingency plans if you’re suddenly incapacitated. Not only will this ensure you get the care you need, and your loved ones get the property you want them to have, but it will make things easier on them in a difficult time. Here are some of the key documents you’ll need to create for a full estate plan.

Wills

Wills are the most common estate planning document—you might already have one. Wills are designed to be read after death. You can distribute your property, lay out your funeral wishes and designate care for any minor children you have. As long as your will meets the Florida standards for a valid will, your executor will carry out your final wishes.

Keep in mind that you should never put your end-of-life wishes into a will, since it typically isn’t read until after your death. Furthermore, if you wish to keep any of your business or assets private, it should not go into the will. Wills become part of the public record during the probate process.

Trusts

Trusts are a way to transfer assets without having to go through probate. Depending on how you have your trusts set up, they can be used to immediately transfer to beneficiaries upon your death—or they can hold assets in trust until your beneficiaries reach a certain age. There are many things you can do with a trust. Since they’re complicated to set up, it’s advisable to work with an attorney.

Not only do trusts provide a way to avoid probate, but they’re also a smart way to privately transfer assets. If there’s anything you want to avoid becoming public, use a trust to circumvent the process.

Powers of attorney

Next, you’ll need to set up powers of attorney: one for your health care and one for your financial affairs. That way, if you’re incapacitated, a trusted loved one can take care of your affairs on your behalf. For example, a financial power of attorney can pay your bills, file your taxes and make other financial decisions while you’re incapacitated or out of the country. Similarly, a medical power of attorney can make medical decisions on your behalf, when you can’t speak up for yourself.

Advance health care directives

In addition to setting up a medical power of attorney, make sure to create an advance health care directive and make it available to that power of attorney. This document delineates what kind of health care decisions you prefer. For example, if you do not wish to be resuscitated, you can relay that here. An attorney will help you ensure all of your bases are covered.

When you need to create key estate planning documents in Miami, FL, reach out to the office of Ruben J. Padron, PA to set up a consultation.

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