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Tips for hiring an estate planning attorney for your family

Estate planning is a very personal matter. Talking about your assets, hopes for the future, death and your desires for your children and grandchildren is often not easy, particularly with someone you do not know well. However, you will need to discuss these matters when establishing or modifying your estate plan.

Will your heirs and appointees do what you want them to do?

If you have a comprehensive estate plan, you will have powers of attorney in place in the event you can no longer make decisions for yourself. However, just because there is a plan in place, it doesn't mean everything will go smoothly.

Superhero efforts may be needed to avert family tragedies

In a large estate, with few inheritors, what happens when there are serious allegations about elder abuse levied at the beneficiary? This exact situation is playing out, in the recently revealed details of a pop culture legend's dealings with his only daughter.

The pitfalls of your parents' estate can help you plan your own

Watching your parents age is difficult. After they are gone, you may be the one to handle their estate. Administering an estate can be a difficult experience, especially if your responsibilities overlap with your grieving process. Yet, it can also be a very enlightening process.

Do your homework before visiting your estate planning attorney

When you are ready to do your estate planning, you can always show up at your attorney's office and have him or her walk through the entire planning process with you, but there are questions he or she is going to have to ask. Having the answers ahead of time can streamline that process and help you avoid making snap decisions that you will have to change later.

Review and update your estate plan regularly to ensure accuracy

If there's one common mistake people make when dealing with their last will or estate plan other than putting it off too long, it's treating the process like a one-time responsibility. Some people will create a basic last will, trust or estate plan and then move on, assuming that they no longer have to worry about their assets and end-of-life planning.

Estate planning and artwork

Prosperous individuals are fortunate enough to be able to be extravagant when it comes to collecting things they are passionate about, such as artwork or other collectibles. Wealth allows them to purchase the best of the best, affording them the opportunity to be very particular about their taste and desires. However, particular as they may be, it is usually much easier and more fun purchasing these grand items than it is to decide what to do with them after their demise.

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