Derry Estate Planning

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"Estate planning" in Derry refers to the decisions a person makes regarding what is to be done with their assets after their death, and the process of implementing those wishes.

You will typically need to seek the help of a professional with legal and/or financial expertise when in the process of estate planning. Simple mistakes in an estate plan can cause severe problems, including legal and personal conflicts between your survivors.

Estate planning can have several positive effects on the planner during life, as well. These benefits are usually somewhat intangible, revolving around the peace of mind that comes with knowing that, after your death, you family will be taken care of and that they'll know what your last wishes are. Nonetheless, most people find this very valuable. To that end, you should come up with a power-of-attorney agreement. When you grant someone power of attorney, you have given them the power to make certain decisions on your behalf. You can grant them as much or as little authority as you want. Most people, however, give family members or life partners power of attorney with respect to medical care, so if they become incapacitated, their wishes will still be carried out.

If you want to maximize the odds that your wishes will be followed after your death, you should do everything you can to make them legally binding. While this is not always possible, a Derry attorney will be able to make sure that, where it is allowed, it is done.

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Common Features of Derry Estates

Will: This is the centerpiece of most estate plans. A will is a document written by a person (the "testator"), usually with the help of a lawyer, which says what is to be done with their property after they die. Most provisions in a will are legally binding, to the extent that ownership of the property legally passes to the named beneficiary. However, a will cannot compel a person to do anything against their wishes (though it can certainly state your preferences on the matter, phrasing them as requests).

Living Will: Living wills are also very crucial for most people. Basically, a living will tells everyone concerned (your next of kin, and your doctor) what type of medical care you want if you become incapacitated. It typically includes the circumstances under which a person wishes to be kept on life support, when they want to be taken off of life support, and, sometimes, instructions on when medical staff should and should not attempt resuscitation.

Power of Attorney: This is an arrangement in which you give someone else, usually a trusted family member, the power to make financial and medical decisions on your behalf, in case you become unable to make or express your own decisions.

Funeral Arrangements: Whatever your preference on this matter (if you have a preference) you should make it known to your family both verbally and in writing. If you have very specific wishes concerning the final disposition of your mortal remains, you should not put those instructions in your will. Or, if you do, you should also put them somewhere else. Wills are typically not read for quite some time after a person dies, and the funeral is usually long over by then, so it will be too late to follow your instructions.

Do I Need a Derry Estates Lawyer?

A poorly drafted or executed Derry estate plan can have major negative consequences. For example, it might be confusing to the people who are most directly affected by it. This confusion can often lead to costly litigation. For that reason, the help of an experienced estate planning attorney can be invaluable.

15 Wills, Trusts and Estates cases posted to LegalMatch lawyers in Derry

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