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Why You Need an Attorney for Estate Planning

By Jason Bottlinger on January 22, 2019

Protecting your family after your death is not an easy subject to think about, but as the new year rolls in and you think about your resolutions, it is a very important one – especially if you want to ensure your assets go to the right people.

If making sure your family is taken care of after your passing is important to you, you should definitely consult with a lawyer. There is nothing worse for a family who has just lost a loved one than costly, long, and stressful legal battles over financial matters. Contact Bottlinger Law L.L.C. at (402) 505-8234 today for a free consultation with an Omaha estate planning attorney.

What Does an Estate Lawyer Do?

An estate planning attorney helps clients get their affairs in order in case of incapacity or death. Some people decide to do the paperwork themselves in order to avoid attorney fees, and although that is an option, it is not one we recommend. These documents are sensitive, and one missing signature can become a huge problem down the line for your loved ones. If you want to be at peace knowing your kids will have the right guardian, your assets will be distributed per your requests, and your family is not going to have any legal issues after your pass away, then it’s best you speak to a local lawyer with experience in estate planning.

Estate Planning Explained

When most people think about estate planning, they think about a “last will and testament.” But there’s much more to it than that. It’s important to think about what should happen if you become sick or unable to communicate, and someone needs to make medical or financial decisions on your behalf. An estate lawyer will take all this into consideration.

Here are four basic things we will consider in your estate planning:

  1. Power of Attorney: Power of attorney is a legal document that allows another person to govern your property, finances, business, or other legal matters. There are two different power of attorneys. The first one gives the power of attorney to another person right away. The other gives the person power over your finances only when you’re incapacitated.
  2. Healthcare Proxy: A healthcare proxy is a person designated to make medical decisions on your behalf in the event you are incapable to do so.
  3. Living Will (Advance Directive): A living will pertains to whether or not you want “extraordinary measures” taken to extend your life, as well as the medical treatments you do and do not wish to allow on your behalf.
  4. Last Will and Testament: The last will and testament allows you to leave your assets to specific individuals and make decisions in regard to the care of your underage children.

There are other options you can set up for your estate plan, such as a living trust, a business succession plan, and charitable distributions. Just talk to Bottlinger Law L.L.C. to learn more!

Estate planning is a detailed process. A missing signature or an unclear phrase can change the outcome of a whole will. A basic estate plan should include a will, a living trust, and power of attorney as well as an advance directive. A more complex one might include other things, such as an insurance trust or a special needs trust for one of your children or a dependent family member.

Nebraska’s state laws are specific when it comes to power of attorney, healthcare proxy, living will, and more. It might seem like a good idea to save some money by using forms you find online, but it might cause a lot of issues down the line when the documents aren’t considered legally valid. Your family will then need to spend thousands of dollars trying to fix the initial mistakes.

If you have minor children, substantial assets, own a business, or own real estate, then it’s a good idea to speak to an Omaha estate planning lawyer and prepare for the future. Call Bottlinger Law L.L.C. at (402) 505-8234 to set up your free consultation today.

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