Understanding Estate Planning

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Understanding estate planning is not a difficult matter, when you have experienced legal guidance.  Watch this educational video by Buffalo Estate Planning Lawyer Thomas F. Hewner for guidance. IF you’re ready to begin your estate plan, contact our office to schedule an appointment with one of our skilled estate planning attorneys today. 

  • Successful estate planning requires an understanding of the differences among people’s concerns and goals. Essentially, people simply want to dispose of their assets and resolve any outstanding issues. Most people should have a will to clearly state who will handle your affairs and how assets will be distributed.
  • Three basic documents, or estate planning techniques, are the essential elements to consider as people conduct their estate planning. They are: a valid will, a healthcare proxy to designate who will make healthcare decisions, and a power of attorney to designate someone to deal with financial affairs if the grantor is living, but unable to manage them.
  • Many people involved in estate planning are concerned about long-term care vis a vis protecting their homes and other assets, and there are three ways to pay for long-term care. Either you pay for it yourself, purchase long-term care insurance, or get the government to pay for it via Medicaid.
  • The final issue, estate taxes, is less of a concern now that, for federal purposes, a person’s estate may be worth over $5 million – or $10 million for a husband and wife – and be exempt from estate taxes.
  • Although New York doesn’t currently have portability, limits in the $5 million range will soon be attached to New York estates.

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