Legal counsel may be used in conjunction with other experts.

Providing Piece of Mind by ensuring that all Facets of your Life Affairs are in Order

Taking preventative steps will alleviate future problems and protect you, your family and loved ones. Even if you don’t believe you have enough assets to have estate planning documents, you are most likely incorrect.

What if you become incapacitated and are unable to communicate your health care or financial needs? What if the health care provider refuses to allow someone you love and trust to make health care decisions for you or the financial institution won't accept instructions because there is no durable power of attorney or health care proxy?

Don’t make the all-too-common assumption that your spouse will automatically get everything (the house, the car, your investments) upon your death. Without a will, there’s no guarantee. That is particularly if you have children and/or surviving parents. The law in Massachusetts will award one-third to one-half of your property to your surviving spouse and divvy up the rest between your children and your parents, if they are still living.

What about a guardian for your children? Wouldn’t you feel more confident in life if you had a concrete plan for the future of the one’s you love?

At the minimum, you should have a Last Will and Testament, Health Care Proxy and Living Will, HIPAA Authorization, Durable Power of Attorney and Funded Trusts.

Did you know that Life Insurance, although a non-probate vehicle, is included in your total taxable estate? A million dollar policy could cost your beneficiary 45% of the amount in taxes. An Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust might be able to alleviate this.

You should be aware that the federal and state tax exemption rate changes yearly, as does the gift tax amount.

Also, it is important to protect your family when you are going through "transition stages" such as divorce and/or becoming a widow. Becoming educated on what these transition stages entail is key.

Karen L. Argetsinger, Esq.110 Cedar Street Suite 250 Wellesley Hills, MA 02481781.431.2231(o)