By Libby Banks, the Law Office of Libby Banks, PLLC
I am writing this in mid-March, for publication in April, not knowing what the next thirty days may bring. COVID-19 is an uncertain virus that our scientists are still figuring out. Many of you are sheltering in place, avoiding any public meetings and keeping social distance even from family to protect those who are vulnerable.
Many are also thinking about estate planning, but not wanting to proceed because they don’t want to leave home. Because of that, we are offering online meetings through Zoom or via Facetime. This system allows us to talk with you face-to-face to begin an estate plan for you. For signing the plan, we currently are doing very short in-person meetings but researching other options to permit you to stay home and still put a plan in place.
Some of the benefits of putting a plan in place are assuring that you’ve appointed someone to manage your assets and care for you if you are incapacitated. One of the best ways to assure that someone can step in quickly if you are no longer able to handle your affairs is with the Revocable Living Trust. The Trust names the trustee you selected and permits that person to step into your shoes to pay your bills, preserve your assets, liquidate properties, and generally assure that both you and your finances are being cared for.
Likewise, after your death, the Trust assures that your named executor can wrap up your estate expeditiously. A properly prepared and funded Revocable Living Trust will avoid the need for probate on your death. Since probate court filings are public record, the trust also avoids the possibility of disclosure of your assets to the public. With a Trust, the person you selected to take charge of your estate will be able to step in quickly to gather, sell and distribute your assets to your beneficiaries with no need for a court’s involvement.
The peace of mind of having your estate planning done is immeasurable. Think about moving forward now; we are blessed to be in this age of technology that permits us to plan even while we are hunkered down to protect ourselves and others.
To begin your estate planning process, call for our free initial consultation: 602-375-6752 or go to our website at Libbybanks.com/schedule-estate-planning-meeting to book an appointment online.