The motivation to put a legal plan in place increases when you fully understand what you lost when you do not plan.Your American Legacy
Without a plan, you put yourself and your property in the hands of a probate court judge. This is true whether you die or become incapacitated. The probate process takes months or years, opens your private business affairs to public inspection, and significantly increases legal and court costs.
Next Spouse Protection
Without a plan, you lose the opportunity to protect your assets from your spouse’s next spouse. People often do not like to consider this possibility, but it is common for spouses to remarry after one spouse dies. When this happens, the estate the couple created together is at risk of the influence as well as the legal rights of the new spouse. This issue is important for about half of the married clients in our practice.
Divorce, Lawsuit, and Bankruptcy Protection for Heirs
Without a plan, you lose the opportunity to provide your beneficiaries lifetime protection from divorce and judgment creditors. This kind of protection can be provided to your beneficiaries while also allowing them to retain personal control over the investment of their inheritance and control over distributions to themselves and their children.
Deciding Who Will Raise Your Children
Without a plan, parents with minor children lose the opportunity to decide who will have custody of them if you become incapacitated or die. Without a plan, the decision will be left up to a judge who does not know your children or any of the contenders for the guardian role. Providing the instructions and decision-making guidelines to protect and care for your children’s future is a key feature of Pinnacle Legacy’s value.
Choosing Who Will Make Your Healthcare Decisions
Without a plan, the laws of your state will provide a list of persons who have the authority to make healthcare decisions for you. The problem is that the individuals your state legislature chooses may not be the same as those you would choose. The individuals you want making those decisions will not even be able to discuss your condition or treatment with your doctor if they are not listed on a properly executed HIPPA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) form.
The Cost of Long-Term Care
Without a plan, you lose the opportunity to keep your financial assets from being consumed to pay your nursing home bill or home health care costs. There are some very powerful solutions available that can provide protection, but to work most effectively, they need to be deployed in advance of your need for care.