estate planning evansville firm

Estate Planning

There are no guarantees on how long anyone will live. Therefore, the urgency of estate planning is a prime concern in your financial planning. Once we have conducted the estate planning review, we will refer you to an attorney who has expertise in estate planning law. Alternatively, you may work with an attorney of your own choosing.

The decision of which attorney to engage is ultimately yours. However, as your financial advisor, we are compelled to look out for your interests. We want you to avoid common mistakes, such as:

  • Failing to execute your will, durable power of attorney, and health care directive
  • Underestimating the size of your estate
  • Not balancing estates between husband and wife
  • Letting a credit shelter trust impoverish the surviving spouse as a result of the 2001 tax act
  • Owning property in joint names
  • Married couples not using trusts to gain the benefit of both unified credits
  • If trusts are executed, not funding the trusts with assets

Other common pitfalls you should avoid include:

  • Beneficiary designations in estate planning documents conflict with beneficiary designations on retirement plan documents
  • Not using the annual gift tax exclusion to reduce your estate size
  • Not gifting during your lifetime, resulting in more estate/gift taxes paid by the family
  • Insufficient liquidity to pay your estate taxes
  • No backup executors or trustees listed on your estate planning documents
  • Executor and trustee not being┬ácarefully chosen
  • Not fully using tax exclusions, tax credits, tax deductions and tax exemptions
  • Not leveraging exclusions, credits, deductions and exemptions when permissible