Estate Planning In Illinois & New York
Estate planning is more than simply preparing documents. Estate planning is about accomplishing your goals. These goals often include:
- Asset protection
- Planning for illness or incapacitation
- Avoidance of probate
- Protecting beneficiaries and children
- Minimization of taxes
- Gifting of assets
- Paying medical and long-term care bills
Types of Estate Planning
At a minimum, everyone should have a will. The will instructs your executor who should inherit your assets. If you have children, a will lets the world know who should be the guardian of your children. Dying without a will (called dying “intestate”) can be very costly. Without a will, you will have no say in who will care for your children, or how assets are to be distributed.
Trusts and Power of Attorney
Another important estate planning tool is a trust. Many people believe trusts are only for wealthy people or those with special needs. This is not accurate. Trusts can accomplish many goals for people of all levels of wealth. A properly prepared trust can help you avoid probate, can legally minimize estate taxes, and can help shield your assets from creditors. Further, a trust can give you a say in how your affairs will be managed in the event you are incapacitated or become incompetent.
Other estate planning documents a person should also consider are powers of attorney for property and for health care. Powers of attorney allows you to appoint a trusted person to manage your financial and health affairs in the event you are unable to do so. In addition, you may want to consider a living will that makes known your desires in the event life-prolonging medical treatments are required.
While the documents described above are commonly used for many people, there are other documents you may want to consider to achieve your estate planning goals. There are numerous considerations and factors in determining which estate plan is right for you.
Our Estate Planning Process
Our estate plan process consists of about four weeks and five steps. Learn more about our process and what you need to do to prepare for your estate plan.
Initial Consultation Call
During the initial consultation, we gather contact details and answer any questions regarding your inquiry.
Complete Intake Questionnaire
After the initial consultation, we send over our intake questionnaire to help gather more specifics for your estate plan. Most clients take about a week to gather appropriate information.
After you’ve completed the estate planning questionnaire, we set up a design meeting to discuss the cost and make sure your needs and wants are met with your estate plan.
After the Design Meeting, we will send over the documents (with all of the names and contacts of your decided decision makers) and diagrams of asset distribution for you to review. During this review process, we will coordinate a signing meeting to finalize the estate plan.
Funding the Estate Plan
The final stage after you sign is putting assets into your trust. We will work with you to schedule another zoom meeting or send you instructions on how to fund your trust.
Our Estate Planning Services
Bielski Chapman, Ltd. provides trust-based estate planning in Illinois and New York which includes the following:
In creating a trust, you can take an active role in the estate planning process while you’re still alive. This type of trust allows for flexibility and changes as your life and estate evolve over time. Additionally, a well-crafted trust may help you avoid the expensive and time-consuming probate process.
Creating a will is a crucial step in ensuring that your assets are distributed according to your wishes after you pass away. Even a simple will can help prevent disputes and lengthy court battles among family members over ownership of your valuables.
Powers of Attorney
Although no one likes to think about the possibility of becoming incapacitated and unable to make decisions about their healthcare and finances, it’s important to plan for this scenario. By selecting a trusted individual to handle your affairs and outlining the terms of those affairs, you can have peace of mind knowing that your wishes will be carried out if the need arises.
Advanced Medical Directives
Advanced medical directives outline your wishes for medical treatment and appoint a trusted individual to make decisions on your behalf if you become incapacitated.
Special Needs Planning
Special needs planning is a critical aspect of estate planning for families with disabled loved ones. By creating a special needs estate plan, you can ensure your loved one’s needs are met and their government benefits are protected.
Medicaid and Long-Term Care Asset Preservation Planning
Long-term care asset preservation planning typically entails either acquiring an insurance product or transferring assets to safeguard wealth in case of a long-term care requirement. Our team can help with services that may include creating trusts, transferring assets, and developing a plan to pay for long-term care.
Business Succession Planning
If you’re a business owner, it’s crucial to plan for both anticipated life changes like retirement, as well as unforeseen events such as sudden incapacity. We work with you to create a comprehensive plan that addresses these potential scenarios and ensures the continued success of your business.