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Ensure Your Legacy with a Plan | Dee Davenport

Half of the US population does not have a plan for what will happen to their estate if they become incapacitated or die.  This is startling because everyone has possessions that they care about and it is essential to designate where and what you want to do with your things. And remember an estate is anything and everything you own – your home, jewelry, art, pets – and it can also be debt. No plan can leave a huge burden on your loved ones while they are already trying to grieve.

An estate plan can answer questions such as:

Who will take care of my bills, my taxes and my investments if I am in the hospital or worse in a comma?
What will happen to the things I own and the people who depend on me after I die?
Who will file my final income tax return?
Who will gather and take care of my estate and make sure it is distributed fairly and accurately to the people I want to benefit from it?
How will the bequest I plan for my church  or other charity properly get to the recipient?

As a service to our community and as an opportunity to get to know each other, Delta Trust & Bank offers complimentary high level reviews of estate plans. The purpose is to encourage folks to work with their attorney to keep their estate plans current and accurate.  When we review an estate plan, we normally look for the following most commonly used estate plan documents:

  • A Last Will and Testament or Living Revocable Trust with a Pour Over Last Will and Testament
  • Durable Power of Attorney for financial matters
  • Medical Power of Attorney for health care matters
  • A Living Will regarding instructions to physician about end of life matters
  • HIPAA Authorization to enable the persons you have provided with Medical Powers to obtain information from doctors, hospitals and other health care providers

We usually ask about:

  • Certain assets will pass to a beneficiary automatically at death such as bank or brokerage accounts with transfer on death or payable on death designations, IRA, 401K or other qualified plans, life insurance proceeds and deeds in the name of husband and wife. It is critical to make sure the beneficiary designations are as you want them to be. Are they?
  • Is the estate of such a size (over $5,340,000 including large lifetime gifts) that it raises federal estate and generation skipping tax planning issues?
  • Is there a need for life insurance?
  • It is essential when using a Living Revocable Trust as your planning vehicle, that the assets you own are actually titled in the name of your Living Revocable Trust. Are your assets appropriately titled?
  • Many people when leaving a gift to a charity to take effect after they no longer need the assets to sustain their quality of life, do so in their Last Will and Testament or their Revocable Living Trust.  If okay with you, the nonprofits appreciate knowing of the gift which they may be receiving after your death.

Remember Delta Trust offers complimentary reviews of your estate plan. Please contact me or Jim Shenep for more information.

 

Dee Davenport
Senior Vice President/Trust Officer
E-Mail

 

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