Define Louisiana “Estate Planning”
Your Estate is all of the assets and liabilities you have acquired during your life and at the time of your death. The point of Estate Planning is to secure the maximum benefit from your resources now, at retirement or disability, and after death, as well.
One way or another, everyone will have an Estate Plan when they pass away. You can either write it yourself. OR, the State will determine your plan for you by operation of the law. The Estate Plan you write is the only one which will distribute your assets according to your wishes.
Louisiana Estate Planning Checklist
You can start TODAY on every one of the items in this list. Why wait? Below you will find a useful graphic for organizing this Estate Planning Checklist.
No. 1. Determine Your Priorities
What do you want to do with your Estate? Do you want your Estate to provide for you, someone else, or something else? Steady income? School or Church endowment? Take care of your children? Your grandchildren?
Gather all your important financial documents and keep them in a safe, accessible place.
You do not want to waste time hunting for important documents. You do not want your heirs having hunt for these, either.
No. 2. Organize Your Records
What are your important Estate Planning documents?
- Wills and Durable Powers of Attorney
- Living Wills and Advance Medical Directives
- Life Insurance Policies
- IRAs and Retirement Accounts
- Louisiana Property Deeds, e.g. Bill of Cash Sale, Judgment of Possession
- List of names and addresses of everyone called to your Estate
No. 3. Educate Yourself
Read articles and books on financial planning and attend financial seminars.
No. 4. Choose Your Advisors
Choose an Estate Planning Attorney, CPA, Insurance Agent, and Financial Planner. Your Estate Planning Attorney will be able to point you in the right direction.
Scott Smith is fortunate to partner with the Lukinovich Law Firm, which provides Estate Planning services to the ultra-wealthy. The Lukinovich Firm also has a deep bench of CPAs and Tax Attorneys, so that no matter is too complex.
No. 5. Preserve Your Estate
Review options for preserving and transferring assets, e.g. tax-advantage vehicles, annuities.
No. 6. Formulate Your Estate Plan
Formulate your plan and put your plan in action, as soon as possible. Proper Estate Planning can save you from devastating financial losses.
Sure, you never know what might happen to you or your loved ones. That’s not the only reason to start planning now. Keeping an eye to the future is the single best way to create for yourself and your family a prosperous future.
No. 7. Review & Revise Your Estate Plan
Review and revise your plan on an annual basis or when major changes occur in your life. Estate Planning can shift frequently as time passes.
Major life changes that affect your Estate Planning may include marriage, divorce, job changes, or the birth of children. They may be indirect, as well. Major life changes occurring to those in your family, such as the marriage of a child, could impact your estate, as well.
Contact Scott with any Questions!
Scott L. Smith, Jr. – Attorney at Law
- 2006 False River Drive, New Roads, LA 70760
- 717 Highlandia Drive, Suite 201, Baton Rouge, LA 70810
Call Scott at 225-718-5334 or email him at email@example.com