There is a clear need for Hempstead residents to plan for the management of their estate. This is key to avoiding tax complications, reducing the strain put on your family, and ensuring the smooth distribution of your assets after you pass away. To learn more about how our team of Hempstead estate planning attorneys can help structure your income, assets, and property to preserve your legacy long-term, consider calling our New Hyde Park office at 516-908-8689 today.
What Is Estate Planning?
Estate planning refers to the strategies put in place to fully protect the property and assets of a person or family. This can include personal possessions, bank accounts, investment portfolios, life insurance policies, real estate, and any other financial or material assets. Small or large, everyone has an estate. Not everyone has a plan in place to protect their estate, however. In the event of your passing or other adverse health event, who will be responsible for your estate? Who will benefit from your legacy? How will your assets and property be distributed to your loved ones? These are questions that Hempstead estate planning attorneys seek to answer.
What Are the Key Benefits of Estate Planning?
Having an estate plan in place is incredibly beneficial, both to you and your loved ones. It is a common assumption that estate planning is only necessary for those individuals who have reached old age. This is far from the truth, however, and estate planning is an important tool for any individual with assets and people to leave them to. The following are four major reasons why estate planning is essential.
Putting You in Control of Your Finances
An estate plan allows you to dictate precisely what happens to your assets and property after you pass away or experience an injury that leaves you incapacitated. Without an estate plan in place, however, the laws of your state will dictate what happens with your finances. In such cases, the courts will appoint a person to administer and settle your estate. There is no telling whether this person will uphold the wishes that you had for your assets and property. Creating an estate plan avoids this completely by allowing you to name the beneficiaries who will receive portions of your estate as well as the person who will administer it.
Avoiding Tax Consequences
When properly leveraged, estate planning can help avoid detrimental tax consequences. In New York State, the estate tax rate depends entirely on the size of your estate, ranging from approximately 3% to 16%. The estate tax exemption at the federal level is set to decrease drastically, to $5.59 million in 2026. This will have a major impact on individuals and families whose estate is too large to find protection in estate tax exemptions. Fortunately, through estate planning there are ways to pass your estate to your beneficiaries without the federal and state governments taking a piece of the pie first.
Protecting Your Health & Children
An estate plan is a financial and legal tool that is designed to fit your specific needs. Protecting you and your family in the event that you can no longer make decisions is a key element of this. Through specific estate planning tools such as the power of attorney and advanced directives, you can specify how you would like medical and legal decisions to be made. It is also possible to provide for the care of your children in an estate plan.
Mitigating Family Disputes
In the wake of a person’s death or incapacitation, family turmoil is common. This is particularly true when major financial decisions must be made on the person’s behalf. Family members may disagree about how to manage the person’s estate, leading to serious disputes. Having an estate plan in place that clearly dictates these matters helps avoid disagreements and ensure that estate distribution is smooth and stress-free.
What Are the Components of an Effective Estate Plan?
There are a variety of legal planning tools and strategies that estate planning attorneys serving Hempstead use to protect a person’s property and assets. Four of the most common components that make up an effective estate plan include the following:
- Last will and testament
- Living will
- Power of attorney
- Health care proxy
These estate planning tools are found in a majority of effective estate plans. While these components are typically necessary, they are not exhaustive. At Davidov Law Group, we reject the idea of a one-size-fits-all estate plan and tailor our planning strategies to meet the individual needs of our clients. Through this approach, we go beyond traditional expectations and create a comprehensive estate plan that most effectively protects our clients assets and property.
The Importance of a Comprehensive Estate Plan
A comprehensive estate plan takes into account all aspects of your finances, familial structure, and long-term goals to create a strategy that protects your estate and leverages your assets as fully as possible. This is accomplished by utilizing several different estate planning strategies, among which include:
- Family LLPs
- Charitable planning
- Insurance planning
- Long term care planning
- Final expenses
- Retirement Account Planning
- Buy/sell and succession planning for businesses
Creating a comprehensive estate plan is particularly important for business owners and people with many heirs. Our experienced Hempstead estate planning attorneys will be able to provide guidance on these legal and financial tools, and how these tools can work to advance your specific goals. Diversifying your estate plan is an effective way to ensure that your finances are optimized to benefit your loved ones.
How Do I Select the Right Estate Planning Attorney for My Needs?
When you are beginning the process of establishing an estate plan, or are considering updating your current plan, it is critical to select the right attorney for your estate planning needs. This decision can have major financial consequences for your estate, so ensuring that your attorney understands your goals is essential. The following questions may be helpful to consider when making hiring decisions regarding your legal counsel:
- Is there an in-house certified financial planner within the law firm to provide technical planning assistance?
- How much experience does the law firm have managing complex financial matters, such as business succession or tax planning?
- Does the attorney view estate planning holistically, leveraging a variety of strategies to protect your assets?
- Are their services geared toward one-size-fits-all estate planning or comprehensive estate planning?
- Do you trust the attorney and believe that they have your long-term financial goals and legacy in mind when offering solutions?
After spending years creating estate plans with family legacy and complex financial matters in mind, we have come to understand the most common questions that individuals have when estate planning. Our published book, Keeping It In Your Family – Protecting Your Family and Leaving a Lasting Legacy, is an ideal starting point for anyone looking to create a comprehensive estate plan for their family. For more detailed and personal guidance, however, consider contacting an estate planning attorney serving Hempstead.
Contact Davidov Law Group to Protect Your Family and Preserve Your Legacy
Creating a comprehensive estate plan is the first step toward protecting your family and preserving your legacy. At Davidov Law Group, we work diligently to understand the goals of our clients and reflect these goals in a personalized, strategic estate plan. To learn more about how we can help, consider contacting our New Hyde Park office today at 516-908-8689.