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What’s Your Estate Plan?

Building a legacyFolks spend a lifetime working and building an estate to enjoy in their retirement years. Yet, many believe estate planning is only for the rich.

This is simply not true. Putting in the effort now, will help you to avoid the confusion, delay, expense, and stress in your family that might occur if you were to die without an estate plan. Speak with your family and manage their expectations to keep the lines of communication open. Most estate planning attorneys say that there are six basic steps in the estate planning process:

  • Start the discussion. Many families face a lack of communication as their greatest hurdle because family members don’t want to talk about estate planning. Parents may delay a discussion because the thought of growing old and dying is, honestly, not pleasant. Adult children may not want to bring up estate planning to avoid stressing parents and grandparents—and because they don’t want to look greedy. But the subject may come up when a neighbor, friend, or relative dies that may lead a family to having a discussion.
  • Take stock. Examine your present financial situation since it’s the foundation of your entire estate plan.
  • Develop goals. As you begin your estate plan, think about your objectives. These will vary from family to family due to differences in liabilities and assets, abilities and ages of survivors, the number of children, along with the values that are important to the creator of the estate plan. Your objectives may change with your age, or changes in marital status, income, assets or other factors in your life.
  • Use professional advisers. Estate planning is technical and complex. An experienced estate planning attorney can coordinate the work of other team members. Ask questions and make sure that you understand your plan and its implications.
  • Consider alternatives and implement the plan. There may be several ways to reach your objectives. Ask your attorney to explain the options. Once the plan has been created, it’s important to implement it.
  • Review and modify. Review your estate plan every few years. Tax laws and circumstances change, so it’s important to review and modify your plans with a qualified estate planning attorney when it’s warranted.

Reference: The (Dodge City, KS) High Plains Journal (January 30, 2017) “Estate planning is for everyone”

 

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We've been putting together as many resources as possible so that we can continue to help:

  • If you’re a current client with a signing appointment or a prospective client with a consultation and would prefer that meeting take place in your own home, we can accomplish that with a little bit of pre-planning on our part and with the addition of a laptop, smartphone, tablet or other computer in your home to facilitate this virtual meeting. For those of you that need to sign legal documents, that too can be accomplished with the use of a webcam (FaceTime etc.), so that we can witness and electronically notarize all of your important legal documents.
  • We launched the rollout of our on-demand webinar early so that new clients and our allied professionals can view the important component parts of ‘an estate plan that works’ at their convenience.  That is available on our website.
  • Live video workshops will be produced as quickly as possible and certainly ahead of our previous schedule; we will keep you posted as these events become available. Given the ‘boutique’ nature of the firm, we rarely have more than ten people in our office including team members at any one time. During this period of ‘social distancing,’ we promise to have no more than 8 people at any time.   This allows us to comply with the Governor’s directive to limit in-person gatherings.
  • The best way to communicate with us is still by phone during regular office hours of 8:30 to 5:00, Monday through Friday, or, you can email any of our team members (that is, their first name followed by @zarembalaw.com).  We will respond to these emails as quickly as possible.
  • Please continue to follow the directives of our local, state, and federal agencies. For your health and in consideration of our team who is assisting you, if you’ve scheduled an office appointment or planned to drop off paperwork and are experiencing a fever, dry cough, or shortness of breath, please contact your primary care doctor for guidance and then our office to reschedule.

Thank you, Walt and the Zaremba Team

Coronavirus/Covid-19
Update to our Process

The unprecedented coronavirus pandemic has taken our entire country by surprise. We understand how difficult this time is for America’s businesses and families.  However, we believe it is vitally important that we make every effort possible to continue to offer solutions that avoid disrupting our important partnership with you, your family and friends.  As you know, estate planning is not something that should wait for a more convenient time, therefore the opportunity to address your important goals both during and after this crisis should not wait.  To that end, we have added the option of a ‘virtual consultation’ to our office process.  You will now have a choice of either meeting with us in our office or in the comfort of your own home.