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Estate Planning 101, Elder Law Attorney, Woodstock, GA


Although often neglected, drawing up an estate plan is as essential to your legacy’s future as drawing up a simple will. A trust, or estate, is not the same as a will – and both are strongly encouraged for financial legacy planning. Below is a basic guide for establishing your estate.

A recent NASDAQ.com article, titled “Estate Planning Guide 101: A Basic Guide To Establishing Your Estate,” gives some basic estate planning instructions that can help get you started.

Outline Your Estate. It is important to outline your current net worth. Forbes describes this equation as:

Net Worth = Assets – Liabilities

The original article explains that assets include information detailed in bank statements, investment statements (such as from mutual fund accounts and retirement plans), trust assets and business interests. Also, include personal property and real estate. Liabilities include debts reflected on credit cards, mortgages, tax bills, student loan statements, business loans, and other indebtedness.  Once you account for your living expenses, you can then see what can be passed to your beneficiaries, and whether you should gift during your life.

Name Your Beneficiaries, Divide the Assets. Next you need to decide who will be the recipients of your estate. This can be very personal and needs to be handled with care, as it is this point in the planning process when you need to think about how much of your estate will go to family and how much will go to charity.

Name Your Trustee. Naming your trustee needs to be handled with the same amount of care that you used when divvying up your assets. Selecting the person to be in charge of your affairs is no small decision, the original article cautions. Naming your trustee takes a significant level of trust, responsibility, and foresight.

Hire a Lawyer. As you work through theprocess, engage a qualified estate planning attorney.  Do not leave planning your will or estate for later. Do It Now!  Take the time to speak to your estate planning attorney and map out the details of your legacy now.

Reference: NASDAQ.com (October 15, 2014) “Estate Planning Guide 101: A Basic Guide To Establishing Your Estate”

Hear From Our Clients
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“On the threshold of retirement, we finally decided to quit thinking we could self-prepare the requisite documents. We had previously had only a very simple will. We needed the necessary legal (including updated will) & health care docs but didn’t want to deal with the time & complication of legalese. Cindy made the process relatively painless. She took the time to explain and answer questions without trying to upsell services. We were done in 2 meetings plus the reading of emailed drafts. In addition to preparing the documents, Nelson Eldercare will be there when our adult children need advice on executing the plans we’ve put in place.So glad it’s behind us and would recommend Cindy and her helpful staff.”

- Bonnie

Cindy and her company treat their clients like family. Nelson’s offers clear, direct, and honest guidance in planning for your families security and future. No one wants to actively sit down and make these decisions, but Nelson’s makes this process seamless. I was so impressed with their willingness to answer all questions big or small. So glad I made the decision have them help my mom and dad and now me. You can’t go wrong with Nelson’s Elder Care Law.

- Hope

The very best elder law attorney and staff anyone could ever ask for! I have referred a number of clients to Cindy and she never disappoints. She is kind, caring, and extremely thorough in making sure everything is completed as it should be. I highly recommend Cindy for anyone needing lawyer services; she truly goes above and beyond for every client she helps and has had a huge impact in so many peoples’ lives. Thank you, Cindy and staff, for everything that you do- I’m so glad to know you!

- Kerri

I heard Cindy’s presentation at a Senior Luncheon at my church, and was very impressed. She helped my daughter and me understand many aspects of elder law. Josh has also been very helpful in my planning to enter an independent living situation . I have told many friends about them.

- Charlotte

Cindy and the Nelson Elder Care Law team are trustworthy and helpful. They are the experts in elder care law. At Leaf Cremation, we entrust our families to the care of the Nelson team when their services are needed.

- Pierce