Feb 28, 2021
Leading estate planning and elder law attorney Kelly Shovelin, founder of Four Pillars Law Firm in Wilmington, NC, lists the 5 “must-haves” of a solid estate plan. For more information please visit https://www.fourpillarslawfirm.com
Wilmington, NC, United States - February 28, 2021 /MM-REB/ —
In a recent interview, leading estate planning and elder law attorney Kelly Shovelin, founder of Four Pillars Law Firm in Wilmington, NC, revealed the 5 “must-haves” of a solid estate plan.
For more information please visit https://www.fourpillarslawfirm.com
When asked to comment, she said, “Many Americans are under the false impression that
having a good estate plan simply means making a will or a trust. However, there’s much more to estate planning than meets the eye. Here are five necessary documents to ensure a smooth transition of your assets to your heirs.”
A will or trust is still essential to any estate plan, according to Shovelin. “This is one document you absolutely must have even if you aren’t in possession of many assets. Wills are vital to help ensure that your wishes about your assets are clear and understood, so they will go to who you want them to go to after you pass. Furthermore, a trust can help circumvent legal issues and minimize taxes, which will cause much less stress on your loved ones.”
While wills and trusts are important, they aren’t the only aspect of an estate plan, Shovelin
said. Beneficiary designations could also help guarantee that your plan is carried out.
“Beneficiary designations on certain accounts, such as retirement accounts and insurance
policies, will help to legally execute your wishes. If you fail to do this, the administrators of these plans could step in and decide on who receives your assets, even if it’s not what you would have wanted.”
Preparing a letter of intent is also an integral part of having a solid estate plan.
When asked to elaborate, Shovelin said, “A letter of intent is not complicated – it’s simply a document that you leave for either your agent or executor to specify what your personal preferred wishes are following incapacity or death.”
“Depending on local laws, the letter might not hold up legally on its own in a courtroom;
however, it provides your agent or executor with a guideline as to how to implement your intentions,” she added.
A durable power of attorney will also help in the legal execution of managing your assets in the case of incapacity.
"To be able to carry out your wishes if you become disabled, you’ll need to have a durable power of attorney already in place. Without a power of attorney, what happens to your assets could be left up to the mercy of a court.”
Shovelin added that “a power of attorney will allow someone to engage in real estate and financial transactions, as well as other legal decisions, on your behalf .”
“In addition to this, make sure to appoint an individual you trust to follow your instructions as a healthcare power of attorney. This should be a trusted person who can make vital healthcare decisions that align with your views if you are not able to make them yourself," she said.
Name: Kelly Shovelin
Email: Send Email
Organization: Four Pillars Law Firm
Address: 2202 Wrightsville Avenue, Suite 213 Wilmington, NC 28403
Phone: (910) 762-1577
Release ID: 88998981
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