Legal Preventative Maintenance
LEGAL PREVENTIVE MAINTENANCE FOR THE INDIVIDUAL/FAMILY
WILLS AND TRUSTS
- TAX – if you have a taxable estate, there is a lot of money which you may give to Uncle Sam when you don’t have to.
- PROBATE – you can avoid the time and expense of probate by planning ahead.
- INTESTATE SUCCESSION – If you don’t have a will, the law will dictate where your money goes. In multiple marriage families, this could prove to be a problem.
- SPECIFIC REQUESTS – who gets your great grandma’s candlesticks? Your memorabilia collection? The dog or cat?
- TRUSTEES – who is best suited to manage your money that you will leave to your minor heirs? Is it the same person you want to care for them or should someone else be their guardian? Are your heirs able to handle the money without advice from a trustee? Will they be at age 30, 40 or 50?
- GUARDIANS – who is best suited to raise your children? Is it the same person you leave to handle the money, or another person(s)?
- PERSONAL REPRESENTATIVES – who should handle the winding up of your affairs when you die?
- COMMON DISASTER – you may be able to avoid a double estate situation.
- LIFE INSURANCE POLICY PAYEES – coordinate with your will and financial plan.
- LIVING WILL – establish or disconnect life support? You must direct in writing specifically as the law requires.
- DURABLE POWER OF ATTORNEY – if you are incapable, who will run your business affairs, write checks, deal with creditors, etc.?
- MEDICAL POWER OF ATTORNEY – who makes your medical decisions if you are not able to do so? What if your children need medical care when you are out of town?
- OTHER POWER OF ATTORNEY – to close real estate deals, handle assets.
- HOME – protect your biggest asset, whether purchase or sale.
- TITLE POLICY – if title to your property was a bundle of sticks, which sticks are missing from the bundle that you are buying? How do they hamper or devalue your interests?
- LEASING – leasing your property to best economic advantage and with the best posture if legal issues arise.
- WRAP LOANS / ASSUMPTIONS / SUBJECT TO – there is danger whenever you take on someone else’s loans and relationships! Don’t be squeezed by parties without having any leverage.
- LIMITED LIABILITY – the name of the game. Don’t bet all your assets on any venture.
- ALTER-EGO – dangers of form over substance.
- RECORD KEEPING – lack of same can cost you.
- TAX LIABILITY – be smart, take advantage of what the law allows.
- PARTNER AGREEMENTS – the time to make them is when the bloom is still on the rose.
- EMPLOYEE ISSUES – protect yourself from those who wish to set you up for a fall; non competes, confidentiality clauses: when, and when not, to sign.
- TAX BENEFITS – it cannot be mentioned enough. Know what can be used to your advantage.
- GIFT TO MINORS – don’t create taxable events, e.g. parents giving down payments.
- PRENUPTIAL AGREEMENT – for young and old alike.
- SEPARATION – asset- and people-planning.
- CHILD SUPPORT – there is no more important subject and time is always of the essence.
PERSONAL INJURY – Negotiate for yourself and lose money! Don’t talk with the insurer until you talk with your lawyer!
DEBT REFORMATION and BANKRUPTCY PLANNING
- HOMESTEAD – protection is available.
- NEGOTIATION – there is always room to save money with a comprehensive settlement.
- ASSET PLANNING – if times get bad.
- ANTI-DEFICIENCY – you may not have to pay for a shortfall on your mortgage if your home is sold from under you.
DEBT COLLECTION – Lawyers’ demands get attention.
GOVERNMENT BENEFITS – help through the maze.
BUSINESS, INVESTMENT COUNSEL – obtain over 35 years of experience with a phone call.
BUSINESS BUYING/SELLING – fraught with perils and issues. Make informed choices.
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