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July 2013 Archives

Estate planning can avoid court-appointed guardianship

Estate planning is not only about planning for one's death. It can also include planning for when one becomes incapacitated in Massachusetts or in any other state. When a person is found incapable of making decisions for himself or herself, the court will appoint a guardianship over the person. This means an individual is given the power to make decisions for the incapacitated person.

Wills and trusts: How to protect assets

When people decide that they want to begin the process of planning for what is to happen to their assets and property after they have died, they frequently think of a will. However, while wills are one way to settle their estates, they are subject to going through probate. Wills are probably the most familiar method of making final wishes formalized to most people. Every state has certain criteria that need to be met for drafting a will, Massachusetts is no exception.

Health care planning could prove burdensome in Massachusetts

When a Massachusetts resident thinks about long-term care, he or she likely takes Medicare or Medicaid into consideration. Unfortunately, many Americans don't know that Medicare will not pay for nursing home stays or assisted living. The same is true for day-to-day eldercare -- and many families end up depleting their savings in order to cover the costs of this type of care for a loved one prior to his or her death. These facts make it all the more apparent that health care planning for the latter years of life should be an important component of the estate planning process.

Organization can help heirs properly allocate assets

When it comes to matters of estate planning, many Massachusetts residents feel certain that they have adequately addressed their needs. Once the planning process is complete, many people put their documents away and never revisit the issue. However, a recently published article suggests that one of the most important aspects of estate planning lies less in the documents that are prepared and more in how those important decisions are stored. Without the proper attention, one's heirs can encounter significant problems when trying to complete the allocation of assets.