Firm News - The Law Office of Eric S. Gullotta

Why You Need an Estate Plan in California

Posted by Gullotta Law Group on Jan 6, 2014 4:56pm PST

If you have any property or assets, even if that property consists of a few cars and some furniture, you have an "estate" which requires written documentation concerning how you wish these items to be handled should you pass away. If you have minor children, you also need an estate plan to take care of your children according to your wishes. Without an estate plan, your property and your children will be handled by the state laws of California instead of by your instructions. When it comes to your family and all that you have worked for throughout your life, isn't it better to be in control through properly executed legal instruments and tools?

Should you die without a will, you will have died "intestate." A will allows you to name a guardian for any minor children, an executor or administrator of your estate, and allows you to name who will receive what property or assets (and when they will receive it). Your heirs and beneficiaries, including any charities, will be named. The executor of your estate will locate, identify, and value all of your property and assets, pay any bills or taxes owed, and then distribute the remainder of your estate's funds or property to your heirs and beneficiaries. This process is done through probate, which is a court-supervised proceeding done to ensure that your estate is handled properly and legally. Probate can be avoided, however, if you have a living trust. A living trust is another estate planning tool which allows you to transfer the ownership of your property and assets to a separate entity. You can then act as the trustee of the living trust, retaining control over the property in your trust for as long as you wish.

Estate Planning Attorney in Santa Rosa, California

Wills, trusts, living trusts, powers of attorney, and advance health directives are just some of the legal tools and instruments that are used in estate planning. Everyone has different situations when it comes to property, assets, children, beneficiaries, and other factors involved in their estate. That is why an estate plan must be devised that accomplishes your goals and objectives as they relate to all of your financial and health matters.

At the Gullotta Law Group, you can learn how an appropriate estate plan can be created for you. Mr. Gullotta can work with you personally to determine how best to secure your family's future. It is his belief that estate planning should not be complicated or burdensome. He started his career as a Certified Public Account and obtained his master's degree in taxation. This background and training gives you an advantage when it comes to smart estate planning. If you need legal help with any aspect of estate planning, including handling probate, contact his offices for a free case consultation. Find out more about this important legal matter and how the firm can fully assist you.