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August 2015 Archives

A longer life means a shift in estate planning

Americans are currently living longer than ever before thanks to revolutions in healthcare and medical technology. Researchers estimate that the average lifespan is now nearly twelve years longer than it was in the 1940s. As a result, the estate planning approach taken in decades past is no longer valid for many New Jersey residents.

How to select an estate planning attorney

Choosing a legal professional to guide the process of creating a comprehensive estate plan is an important task. The individual who is trusted with this role will have a great deal of impact on the finished product, and New Jersey residents should take the time and effort needed to find the best possible estate planning fit. As with any other professional, one of the best ways to search for a good match is to ask for referrals.

Why young people need to consider estate planning

Many In New Jersey are aware of the tragic death of Bobbi Kristina Brown, the daughter of the late singer Whitney Houston and her former husband, Bobby Brown. Bobbi Kristina was in a comatose state for six months after being found face-down within a bathtub in her home. Her family has gone through a very bitter and public fight concerning her care, as she did not have the proper estate planning documents in place that would clarify those matters.

Procrastination a serious obstacle within estate planning

Few New Jersey readers are completely free from the dangers of procrastination. It is normal for an individual to postpone tasks that he or she feels are onerous, unnecessary or simply undesirable. For many of us, the act of procrastination is elevated to something of an art form, and an elaborate system of excuses are made for avoiding unpleasant responsibilities. That said, not every act of procrastination carries the same weight. For example, failing to clear out one's email inbox does not carry the same weight as putting off estate planning.

A brief yearly estate planning checklist

Virtually all New Jersey residents are aware that having a clearly drafted estate plan is key to achieving the goal of a smooth transfer of assets at the time of one's death. That said, few people are aware that estate planning is not a to-do item that is completed and then forgotten about. It is important to give one's plan a periodic review, and the following items should be considered annually to ensure that the plan still serves the intended purpose.

The role of executor within the estate planning process

Creating a properly drafted will is an important part of ensuring that one's assets are distributed to the proper heirs when the time comes. Another aspect of estate planning involves determining who should be appointed as the executor of one's will. This is an important choice, and one that can make a world of difference in the eventual outcome of a New Jersey resident's estate planning efforts.

Is do-it-yourself estate planning a cost-saving win?

In today's economy, New Jersey residents are looking for the best possible value in all areas of their lives. Whether it is clipping coupons or shopping for the most fuel-efficient vehicle, people want to get the most for their money, and save in every area possible. That said, there are certain areas in which a do-it-yourself approach is not in one's best interests and can actually end up costing more than was saved. Estate planning is a good example and is a need that is best served by a professional touch.

Addressing lesser possessions within estate planning

When most New Jersey residents are working on their estate plans, they focus on the manner in which sizeable assets will be distributed among their chosen heirs. Wills usually refer to real estate, vehicles, investments and other items of significant value. For many, however, outlining the inheritance of less valuable items is also an important consideration. With the proper degree of estate planning effort, it is possible to structure a clear and smooth transfer of these lesser items.

Facebook offers new estate planning tool

More and more New Jersey residents are using social media to stay connected to friends and family, and to make new connections with others who share similar interests. Among social media, Facebook remains one of the most popular choices. For some, an event has not truly happened until the details and accompanying photos are posted on Facebook. Over time, the profile grows, and can become a significant digital asset. Until recently, users had few options when it came to including Facebook within estate planning.