Protecting Your Future And Your Legacy
Estate planning is not just for the ultra-wealthy or retirees, though they definitely benefit from planning. New parents may want to secure a guardian for their child in case something happens to them. An uncle might want to provide for a nephew with special needs. A business owner may want to create a succession plan. All these people need an estate plan, and they all have needs unique to them and their families.
I am estate planning and elder law attorney Matthew T. Stillman, J.D., LL.M. I have over 25 years of experience helping clients in Connecticut and New York with a wide variety of legal issues, but my firm, Stillman & Associates, LLC, is especially well-known in the area for estate planning and elder law services. Whatever your legal goals, I have the skills and knowledge to help you reach them.
Creating A Comprehensive Plan
Estate planning is about more than just deciding who will receive your assets after you die. A comprehensive plan looks out for your interests as you age and looks after your family when you are gone. Documents that may help you do that could include:
- Wills – As the basis of a plan, your will can nominate your executor, name guardians for minor children and distribute your probate assets after your death.
- Trusts – There a many types of trusts that can serve myriad purposes, from looking after a child with special needs to providing money for a charity. The most popular type of trust allows you to set it up and control it while you are alive, then name a successor trustee to take over after you die. The benefit is that the assets in your trust will not go through probate.
- Power of attorney – As you age, you may want to enlist the help of a trusted friend or loved one to make financial decisions on your behalf if your physical health or cognitive function declines. This document allows them to do that and avoid a costly and time-consuming conservatorship process.
- Advance medical directives and living will – These documents work together to let people know your wishes for medical care when you cannot articulate them yourself.
- Business succession plan – If you own a business, you need to think about what will happen to it if something happens to you.
These are just a few of the available tools for estate planning. To determine which ones will work best for you, I will review all your assets, including real estate, as well as any beneficiary forms you have for investment accounts or insurance plans. I look forward to examining the possibilities with you and creating a comprehensive plan that meets all of your needs.
An Approach Based On You
There are many ways to approach an estate plan, from tried-and-true methods that have been around for decades to new and innovative ideas. After presenting you with all your options, I will allow you to make the final decisions based on your comfort level and your goals for the future.
Start Planning Today
If you are ready to start planning, contact my Guilford office to schedule an appointment. You can either reach out online or call 860-764-2980 today.