Protecting Your Beneficiaries And Your Assets

Many people think that estate planning is just for the wealthy. However, everyone needs a basic estate plan. Without an estate plan, the government may end up deciding who gets your assets if you die.

I am Philip E. Carey. I draft wills and trusts for everyday people in the greater Sacramento area. I also guide families and personal representatives through the California probate process. I offer a free initial consultation to discuss your needs.

Planning Your Estate

An estate plan may be simple or complex, depending on your assets and your goals.

A simple will, combined with a power of attorney and health care directive, may be all you need to protect your beneficiaries. In some cases, however, a simple will can end up making things more complicated and costly for your beneficiaries.

Depending on your circumstances, you may benefit from also having a trust. A trust can help you accomplish specific goals such as:

  • Avoiding the delay and cost of a probate proceeding
  • Minimizing taxes
  • Providing assets to a disabled family member without making him or her ineligible for Medicaid
  • Protecting a beneficiary's assets from issues like divorce or lawsuit

Estate planning is important at any age, but it becomes more critical as you get older. For example, if you don't complete a power of attorney while you have the legal capacity to do so, your family members will have to go through the expense of a conservatorship proceeding to make basic decisions for you.

Guiding You Through California Probate

If you have lost a loved one or have been named the personal representative of a person who has died, I can guide you through the California probate process.

Probate is the legal process of distributing a deceased person's assets to those who are entitled to receive them under the terms of a will — or under California law, if a person dies without a will. The probate process can be completed in as little as six months, but may take longer. A simplified form of probate is available for small estates in California.

Probate isn't required for all assets. For example, assets kept in a trust can be distributed directly to beneficiaries without involvement of the probate court. I will advise you when probate is necessary and make it as simple as possible. I also handle probate disputes such as will contests.

For More Information About Estate Planning And Probate

Call me at 916-564-0706 to arrange a free initial consultation.