Arkansas Estate Planning Law Firm in Springdale
Northwest Arkansas Estate Planning Attorney
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What would happen if you didn’t make it home?
What would happen if you couldn’t make your own decisions?
None of us are Going to Live Forever
We could have an accident or medical incident any moment that leaves us unable to make decisions or worse. Have you picked who you want and made it legal? Or are you going to let a Judge decide?
Our days on this earth are numbered and, while it isn’t the most pleasant conversation piece, neglecting to face it could make things far more unpleasant for our family or friends when we’re gone.
The last thing any of us wants to do is add complication, confusion, or even conflict on top of an already challenging time.
Control Your Future
Feel safe and secure about your assets and legacy. Be assured your loved ones will be taken care of and your wishes will be honored if you are incapacitated and after you’re gone. Our comprehensive estate planning solutions are designed to give you control over your future.
Protect Your Home
Don’t give it all to a nursing home. Don’t lose a big chunk to probate.
Effective Estate Planning – Protect Your Assets and Legacy
Your plan will give you peace of mind and confidence that you’ve done all you can to protect you, your family, and your money the best way possible. Through our professional estate planning services, you will be able to stay in control.
We Get It…Estate Planning Seems Hard and Intimidating so We’re Here to Help
Estate planning can feel intimidating and paperwork too easy to put off. That’s why we’ve developed a painless estate planning process that will give you the peace of mind you deserve today, while leaving things tidy for your family down the road.
Get Everything in Order for Your Loved Ones
Your Guide to Success
I know first hand how hard it is to lose somebody and the headaches that follow. I know the importance of having a plan in place.
My father passed away of a sudden heart attack in 2010. Because of this, mom and I had to take the family ranch through probate – for the third time since 1975. This was an extremely long and stressful process and it is the last thing that anyone wants to go through while they are mourning.
I decided then and there a better way must exist. And it does. That better way is an effective estate plan.
I’ve helped 1000’s of families avoid probate and other legal messes.
The Best Wills and Trusts Attorney
The Best Elder Law
Three Simple Steps – Leave Nothing to Chance
Estate Planning – The Superior and Only Effective Way
Estate planning is the superior and the only effective way to protect what you have from the nursing home, avoid probate, and prepare for incapacity for your peace of mind and quality of life.
Estate planning refers to the process of making arrangements for the management and distribution of your assets after you pass away. It is important because it ensures that your wishes are carried out, minimizes taxes and fees, protects loved ones, and provides peace of mind for you and your family.
Estate planning is about preparing for the management of your affairs and distribution of your assets during and after your lifetime. With our expertise in estate planning, a great estate plan will minimize (or eliminate) taxes and other major expenses like probate and losing it all to a nursing home. A plan also prepares for any chance of incapacity in the future. Plans allow your family to act instead of react when time matters most.
A great plan answers these questions, and more:
- How can I save my house from the expenses of nursing home care and ravages of probate?
- How can I make it easier on my family during already hard times by avoiding probate and other legal messes?
- Who will take care of and raise my children if I can’t?
- How do I assure who gets what, when, how, and how much and manage it wisely?
- Who will manage my assets and affairs when I’m incapacitated?
Nobody likes to imagine what might happen to their loved ones after they’re gone. Who will inherit your assets? How can you spare your family the hassle of dealing with probate? If you have special needs children, who will take care of them when you pass away? Who will manage their inheritance? Who will raise your minor children?
Estate Planning Expertise At Your Disposal
If you’re struggling to find answers to questions about estate plans, our experienced estate planning attorneys at DeWitt Law Firm are here for you.
What is My Estate?
Your own estate is everything you own. It includes life insurance policies, retirement accounts, annuities, retirement plans, IRAs, checking accounts, savings accounts, furniture, clothing, and more.
The Dangers Of Not Having A Will
You may think that if you don’t have a lot of money in bank accounts, real estate, or other assets, you don’t need a will. Or maybe you’re still young and assume you’ve got plenty of time to write a will. Unfortunately, these are common misconceptions that could come back to hurt your loved ones after you’ve passed away.
If you die without making beneficiary designations through a will, your estate could get tied up in lengthy and complicated probate proceedings – and that’s something you want to avoid at all costs.
In probate, the court will use your assets to pay off debts. Anything left over gets distributed to your heirs, including children, parents, and surviving spouses. But if you haven’t designated beneficiaries, you’ll have no say over who gets what.
The court will also appoint an executor to oversee the disbursement of your estate. The executor’s job includes tracking down your heirs and distributing your assets, which is a time-consuming and stressful task. The whole process can take months or longer, during which your loved ones can’t access money they might desperately need.
When your family is dealing with the grief of your passing, they shouldn’t have to handle the hassle of probate court, too. That’s why everyone needs a will – no matter their age or financial status.
Why You Need To Set Up A Trust for Your Beneficiaries Today
With trusts, you’re in greater control of who gets your assets and when. Typically, heirs receive assets through a trust much more quickly than they would via probate court. Our estate planning services include setting up trusts to distribute your assets just days or weeks following your death.
When it comes to setting up a trust, you have two main options. One is a revocable trust, which you can change as long as you’re still living and able to make sound financial decisions. An irrevocable trust, on the other hand, is much stricter. You can’t change this type of trust without a court order or the approval of all beneficiaries. An estate planning attorney will help you choose a trust if you’re unsure which is best for you.
People with large estates can also use trusts as a estate tax-efficient method of wealth transfer. In some cases, your heirs won’t have to pay taxes on assets you’ve left them in a trust. That’s especially appealing in a rough economy when every penny counts. Calculating trust taxes is a complicated topic, though, which is why you need a knowledgeable estate planning attorney to help you out.
A trust keeps your estate out of probate and may also mean your beneficiaries get a larger inheritance. In Arkansas, a trust does not have to pay your creditors.
In a trust, you put property into it as the “grantor.” Then the “trustee,” who is you during your lifetime, or you and your spouse if your are a married couple, manages the property for the benefit of the beneficiaries. When you pass, then the trust becomes irrevocable and your successor trustee follows the rules you left.
Durable Power of Attorney: A Key Aspect of a Valid Estate Plan
What happens if you become ill or incapacitated and can no longer make decisions for yourself? Through our estate planning solutions, you can set up a financial power of attorney along with a healthcare power of attorney and have a loved one make decisions on your behalf. Powers of attorney give your representative authorization to manage your money and property when you’re sick, disabled, or otherwise unable to do so.
You can also appoint a medical power of attorney to make health care related decisions for you. Even if you think your loved ones know your wishes, this isn’t always true. Advance care planning ensures that your family knows exactly what to do, making things a little easier for them during what is likely a very difficult time.
Is power of attorney the same thing as guardianship? They are similar, but you can think of guardianship as stricter and more restrictive overall. The Probate judge will pick your guardian. A guardian does not have as much authority to act independently. With power of attorney, you’re still allowed to make certain choices for yourself. If you’re under someone’s guardianship, however, that person makes all decisions on your behalf.
What About Estate Tax Planning?
The amount of estate tax due is based on the value of the estate. Arkansas does not have an inheritance or estate tax. The tax exemption for federal estate tax is $12,920,000.00. For a couple, you can double that amount. That means that the majority of estates will not owe estate tax unless it is in a state with the tax. Most estates don’t even need to fill out a return for inheritance taxes and send it to the internal revenue service.
Books and Reports
How to Get Started With Your Estate Plan
DeWitt Law Firm: Your Partner in Estate Planning
DeWitt Law Firm serves people with legal needs throughout Northwest Arkansas. We are ready to help you. And we serve multiple communities around Springdale, Arkansas.
Let DeWitt Law Firm put their experience and diligent legal representation to work for you. Contact us today to learn how DeWitt Law Firm can help you.