Do You Need Estate Planning Help? Contact a Los Angeles Lawyer for Estate Planning and COVID-19
Many Americans are still spinning their mental heels attempting to understand how they woke up one morning and the world was very different. In several states, including California, residents have been issued a shelter-in-place mandate that restricts their outdoor activities to only those that are considered essential. This means a loss of work for some, while for others, it means a workplace at home.
The sudden and unexpected deaths of thousands of Americans have citizens scrambling to make sure their important documents are in order. With the reality of the unknown, the unexpected and the uncertainty upon us, it is time to take advantage of being quarantined to ensure that your end-of-life and other legal documents are properly executed. There is estate planning, wills, trusts, healthcare directives and insurance policies to name a few. The whole subject can be overwhelming, but with organization and an estate planning and Coronavirus attorney in Los Angeles, it can be professionally and correctly done.
When we speak of estate planning, we are referring to pre-planned instructions on how your affairs should be managed if in the event you were unable to communicate that information due to sickness or death. This is not the kind of conversation that is easy to have, but as is evidenced by the unfolding events, it's essential. If you know in advance that you will need an attorney for estate planning, our team is exclusively trained and experienced in these matters and stand ready to assist.
Durable Power of Attorney
A power of attorney (POA) is the person whom you designate to make decisions on your behalf with respect to assets omitted from your trust. POAs represent your wishes regarding medical and life insurances, retirement benefits and investment portfolios, among other financial issues. They make payments to anyone dependent on you financially. Your POA trustee should be notarized as a matter of general rule, but especially in the event of real property ownership. If you cannot get to a notary, it is advisable to utilize the services of a mobile notary.
Due to privacy laws enacted by the state and the federal government (HIPPA), it is in your best interest to seek help from our team of lawyers. Some hospitals or medical facilities may need certain proof specific to their businesses, so careful attention to detail is warranted here. Therefore, the Law Offices of Nigel Burns can fact-check all the details of your paperwork to ensure that your elected POA has the documentation necessary to represent your interests in light of these laws.
A power of attorney provides instructions to healthcare professionals as to whether or not you would like to be put on life support, or resuscitated, in the event of a medical emergency. At a time when some hospitals are considering waiving this step due to the Coronavirus crisis, and hundreds of critical patients simultaneously in the care, having one of these prepared beforehand is crucial. In addition, the State of California has specific requirements that must be met to authenticate the legitimacy of a durable power of attorney. An estate planning and Coronavirus attorney in Los Angeles can explain these requirements in detail and help you get your advanced directives in proper legal order.
A will dictates what happens to your possessions when you pass away. The reach is far and assures that you have the last say in what happens to your property, rather than having your state make those decisions in the absence of a will.
Every state has its own requirements by which a will is considered valid. California is unique in that you can write your own will--known as a holographic will--and can be validated with your signature alone and without the aid of witnesses or notary. Another option for California residents is one in which you supply two disinterested parties, or people who have no vested interest in your estate. If there is no gain for them, they need only sign off on your hand-written will to make it valid.
In such cases where a trust is used, the will would be considered a “pour-over-will” where all unfunded assets would be transferred to your trust.
Deeds record ownership of real property and can transfer ownership to your trust. In California, a deed must be notarized in order to transfer; thus, if you cannot get out to get it notarized, a mobile notary can come to you. On another note, if you opt not to use a notary, you may be required to prove to your financial institution that a transfer has occurred by way of a court order.
Revocable or Living Trust
A trust is an important part of an estate whereby it designates a trustee to manage your affairs if you are incapacitated, and dictates how the distribution of your estate should be handled. Amid the reality of the Coronavirus, a trust can remove the guesswork from decisions that must be made for long-term care, regarding probate and keeping estate taxes to a minimum. Our Los Angeles lawyer for estate planning and COVID-19 can give you a peace of mind by ensuring your wishes are clearly communicated.
A Critical Moment in Time
What is happening in this country is forcing our hand and prompting us to put away any further procrastination. With the bleak projection of more deaths, these matters should be squared away sooner than later. Therefore, if you need an attorney for estate planning, the highly experienced estate planning lawyers at our firm are ready to step in and help ensure that your documents are in order and properly executed. Give them a call today and let them put your mind at ease regarding these complex matters.
Our Los Angeles lawyer for estate planning and COVID-19 helps individuals, families, real estate developers and other businesses protect their assets and financial future.