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is a a a a a must must Often times people assume they must must appoint a a a a a a a a a a relative or child to act as an an Estate Trustee because it it would be be be “an “an honor” honor” While it it may be be be considered “an “an honor” honor” for some the the primary considerations should be be choosing someone with the the patience ability and willingness to carry out this responsibility Powers of Attorney
A power of attorney is an an instrument by which a a a a a a person person authorizes another person person (the “Attorney”) to to act on on on on his or or or or her behalf It is is quite common for for people to to to execute a a a a a a a a power power of of attorney attorney for for personal care and a a a a a a a a a a power power of of of attorney attorney for property at at the same time of of drafting a a Will In a a a a a a a power of attorney for property the authority granted to to to an an an Attorney
may may be general in nature and thus may may authorize the the Attorney
to to to act on on the the grantor’s behalf in in in conducting his or or or or her financial affairs Alternatively the the power of attorney attorney may be quite narrow authorizing the the the attorney attorney to to perform specific specific acts such as as the the the sale of of of specific specific assets (house car etc ) the the the conduct of of of banking or the the transfer of of of securities etc Similarly in a a a a a a a a power of attorney for personal care the the authority authority granted to to to to an an attorney is is is the the the authority authority to to to make on on on on his or or or or her behalf decisions concerning the the grantor’s personal care care such as health care care shelter nutrition clothing hygiene and safety While you can appoint more than one attorney it is important to to to decide whether they are to to to act “jointly” or or or “jointly “jointly and severally” Depending upon where your attorney resides such a a a a a a a a a distinction may have significant practical considerations Information Gathering
Upon death one of the the first things to to do is to to to gather gather as as much information as as possible It is important to to look for for and gather gather any Wills deeds financial documents notes
and insurance policies etc that the deceased may have As a a a a a a a a a a starting point the the testator testator should consult the the testators lawyer lawyer as it is generally good practice for original Wills to to be kept at at the lawyer’s office Upon death you may want to to to ask the the lawyer to to provide notarized copies of of the the deceased’s will Before estate matters can be pursued (ie Survivor-ship application transferring a a a a a a a a a a house or or automobile other legal matters) a a a a a a a a a a a copy of the the the death certificate is also required Please speak to the the funeral home about obtaining certified copies of the death certificate (as some agencies will not accept photocopies) Probate
Common questions from a a a a newly entrusted/appointed estate trustee are “Do we we have to Probate?” and and “What is is probate and and why do we we need it? Probate
is is is is a a a a a a a a a a rather formal procedure establishing the the the the validity of of of a a a a a a a a a a Will Will and is is is the the the the official “proving” of of of the the the the Will Will Probate
asks for the the the court’s involvement and is not not cheap or or or quick Fortunately not not all Wills need to go through probate such a a a a a a a determination will be dependent upon a a a a a a testator’s unique situation In the event an estate requires probate taxes will have to be paid Whether to to spend your time and effort most most planning to to to avoid probate depends on a a a a a a a a a a number factors most most notably your your your age your your your health and your your your wealth For some people a a a a a a a a a a simple Will may be all you you need -adopting a a a a a a a a a a a complex probate avoidance plan now may mean you you you will have have to re-do it it it as your life situation changes Similarly if if you you have have very little property the need to avoid probate may not be such an an important consideration Regardless the more information you Page 32 - - VANDER PLAAT-CAGGIANO FUNERAL HOME 

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