Including Your Service Providers In Your Estate Plan | Atlanta Will and Trust Lawyers

Atlanta Estate Planning Takes a Team

 

An Atlanta will and trust lawyer’s job is to make sure that you have all of your ducks in a row so that if you become incapacitated or die, your loved ones will now how to manage your estate and follow your wishes.  Laws in Georgia vary from those found around the country, which is why you want to work with an attorney who is skilled in understanding your specific needs.  One area that should be considered is your service providers.

“Service providers” covers a wide range of individuals involved in your life.  Should you be unable to communicate with them, you want to ensure that your trustee, executor, guardian, or other responsible person is able to communicate with them on your behalf.  Having them all listed in one place will make this job much more manageable.

Household Providers

This list should include all of the people or companies that you deal with when it comes to the maintenance of your home.  If you are incapacitated, your home will need to continue to function in your absence, and your representative will need to be able to contact these people to make sure things keep running smoothly.  In other cases, whether you are deceased or incapacitated, there are certain services that you may no longer need, and the person in charge needs to be able to contact the service providers and cancel with them.

Some examples of household providers that you will want to list might include:

• Computer support

• Food or water delivery

• Gardening

• House keepers

• Heating/Cooling system maintenance

• Heating oil delivery

• House sitters

• Pest control

• Pool or spa maintenance

• Utilities

• Vehicle maintenance

Basically, anything that you have performed on a regular basis should be noted, along with contact and payment information.

Medical Service Providers

You should also provide your Atlanta will and trust lawyer with contacts for your medical service providers.  This information could be very valuable should you need medical attention but be unable to reach out to these providers on your own.  Additionally, if you have standing appointments with these providers, it will be helpful to have them canceled so you don’t accrue charges for service you’re not using.

Some of the medical service providers you may want to include on your list are:

• Chiropractor

• Counselor

• Dentist

• Massage therapist

• Ophthalmologist

• Physical therapist

• Primary care physician

• Psychiatrist

• Specialists

Personal Service Providers

There are other types of regular services that you may use, and you’ll want to include these as well for the same reasons already mentioned.

Some personal service providers to keep in mind for inclusion:

• Childcare provider

• Hairdresser

• Home care provider

• Meal preparation

• Transportation

• Tutors

Additional Information

Along with the contact information for these service providers, it’s a good idea to make notes about when they are expected, and you may even want to include service agreements and contracts.  For example, if you have a standing arrangement to have your sprinkler system blown out each fall, make a note of that.

Your Atlanta will and trust lawyer may not include all of this information directly in your estate plan, but he or she will want to be able to make a note of where it can be located when the need arises.

It really does take a village sometimes ….We are happy to consult with your financial planner, accountant, or other professional to make sure you get the best estate plan possible.  For more information or help getting started, please feel free to call our office at 770-425-6060 to schedule a complimentary Georgia Family Treasures Planning Session ($750 value) with the mention of this article.

What to Expect from Estate Planning In Atlanta, Part III

Happy Family 3

 

This is the third in a series of articles on what to expect when you work with your Atlanta, Georgia, estate planning lawyer.  Each article will cover several of the topics that you will need to consider to make a plan that works for your needs.

In the previous two editions of this series, we looked at some of the items an estate planning lawyer in Atlanta GA will want you to consider in preparing for your incapacitation or death.  These are some of the more typical items that you will want to highlight.  In addition, of course, your attorney will work with you on how to manage your assets in your estate plan.  There are several areas of consideration, some of which will include:

  1. Retirement Plans and Pensions: Should you pass away, your retirement plan or pension will pay out to your beneficiaries.  To ensure that this happens the way you intend, you’ll want to work with your Atlanta estate planning lawyer to determine its value and how you envision it being used.  Do you want the money to go directly to your spouse?  Will it be used to fund some sort of trust for your children?  Perhaps you want to leave it to a nonprofit organization?  Each of these choices has different ramifications, and you will need to look into how your retirement plan is set up.
  2. Insurance: There are so many kinds of insurance policies, but the ones most often thought about during the estate planning process are life insurance and annuities.  Again, you will want to determine the beneficiary or beneficiaries of your policy.  It’s also a good idea to keep up to date on what your policy offers, as term life policies will expire at a certain age.
  3. Bank and Other Accounts:  As with your retirement and insurance policies, you may choose to name a beneficiary on these accounts.  On the other hand, you may choose to have someone who manages the funds for specific purposes.  Your Atlanta estate planning lawyer will help you create a list of these accounts with directions on what should happen to them.
  4. Real Estate: From your personal residence to income property, you need to have a plan in place for what is to become of these assets after your death.  There are a variety of tax implications that come with passing on real estate or even selling it, so an Atlanta estate planning lawyer will be able to help you develop a plan that will benefit your estate according to state laws.
  5. Taxes: As you likely know, there are a variety of taxes that come along with the inheritance process.  You may not be aware, however, that there is still a need to pay taxes on assets after your death and before they are bequeathed.  Your estate plan needs to be set up in a way that can provide for these taxes.  Likewise, your regular income and other taxes will need to be paid up to your death, so having all of your current documents in order will help the executor of your estate to comply with Georgia state and federal laws.

So far, this series of estate planning articles has covered some distinct areas of planning.  Our last piece will hold a few tips on other considerations that you may want to keep in mind when working with your estate planning lawyer in Atlanta, Georgia.

For more information or help getting started, please feel free to call our office at 770-425-6060 to schedule a complimentary Georgia Family Treasures Planning Session ($750 value) with the mention of this article.

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