Estate Planning Resources | Adviser Investments

Estate Planning Resources in ONE Location

A detailed resource offering everything you need to get your estate planning affairs in order and cement your legacy

Whether you’re just starting the estate planning process, working through complex issues or responsible for settling a loved one’s estate, find detailed answers to your estate planning questions below.

Drawing upon Adviser Investments’ decades of experience, we’ve created extensive estate planning resources to help you get your affairs in order, including blog posts, checklists, podcasts and more.

One of the greatest gifts you can leave loved ones is an organized estate plan, one that clearly expresses your final wishes and tax-efficiently continues your legacy.

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Resources for Estate Planning

Our estate planning resources are organized under eight categories so you can quickly find the information you need. Simply click, go and learn.

#1 – Estate Planning Checklist

#2 – Finding the Right Estate Attorney

#3 – Choosing Primary Beneficiary, Estate Executor and Medical POA

#4 – Will Planning Checklist and How to Contest a Will

#5 – Trusts

#6 – Federal Gift Tax and Family Gifting

#7 – Probate Process and Intestate Succession

#8 – Settling an Estate Checklist and Financial Checklist

1. Estate Planning Checklist

Estate Planning Checklist: Must-Haves Before You Die

Our comprehensive estate and legacy planning checklist identifies five critical estate planning must-haves. Once completed, your final wishes will be honored and your family will be unburdened; free to grieve instead of picking up the pieces you left behind. Put your affairs in order.

2. Finding the Right Estate Attorney

You’ve worked long and hard to build a legacy for your loved ones—you deserve the peace of mind that comes with knowing your wishes will be carried out. And there’s a lot more to it than merely drafting a will.

Listen to our financial and legal professionals as they share straightforward advice based on real-world experience for finding the right estate attorney for you. 

3. Choosing Primary Beneficiary, Estate Executor and Medical POA

Primary Beneficiary: What Is It and Should You Name One?

Choosing a primary beneficiary is an important step to ensure your wishes for the individuals (and organizations) that matter to you are carried out after your death. Understand how to name primary and contingent beneficiaries; and common legal and financial accounts requiring primary beneficiaries.

Choosing the Executor of Your Estate: Roles and Responsibilities

Selecting the executor of your estate is a key step to ensure your estate planning wishes are fulfilled. To help you make an informed selection, there are factors to consider, including the individual’s character and their ability to fulfill the required roles and responsibilities. Explore our recommended character traits and six key tasks an executor must manage.

Medical Power of Attorney: Overview and Preparations

A medical power of attorney (POA) is a critical legal document for all adults—young and old. Without one, you leave important medical decisions regarding your mental and physical well-being to strangers if you’re ever incapacitated. Understand what life events require a medical POA review.

4. Will Planning Checklist and How to Contest a Will

Will Planning Checklist: What to Include in a Will

Every adult—young and old—needs a legal will. This is as true for unmarried couples as it is for families with young children. A will is an opportunity to express your final wishes, support loved ones and continue your legacy after your death. Understand what to include in yours.

How to Contest a Will: Grounds and Evidence Required

Contesting a will is challenging. Each state has its own laws and the burden of proof rests on the challenger. There are reasonable reasons to contest a will, including believing you haven’t received a fair share of your loved one’s estate or being left out altogether. Follow our seven steps for contesting a will.

5. Trusts

Four Advantages of Trusts

Wills and trusts both have advantages, but trusts often have the edge with estate planners—in large part because they avoid the probate process, which can be long, drawn out and public. Understand the four key advantages for using trusts and why they’re an important financial planning tool.

What Is a Living Trust and When Should You Consider One?

Establishing a living trust helps increase financial security for times when you and your family are most vulnerable—after all, things happen, including death and unfavorable medical diagnoses. Understand when to consider a living trust, what assets can be placed in one and how it’s different than a will.

Defining an Irrevocable Trust and When to Consider One

An irrevocable trust is an advanced estate planning tool that helps protect your assets and minimize tax obligations. Specifically, assets are removed from your estate and placed into a trust, whereby you transfer control and ownership of the assets. Learn if an irrevocable trust is really irrevocable, when to consider one and its four key uses.

Advanced Estate-Planning Strategies: 4 Ways Trusts Help Maximize the Amount Loved Ones Receive Under Current Law

Passing on wealth to heirs is one of the primary objectives of most financial plans. Roth IRA conversions, irrevocable life insurance trusts, intentional grantor trusts and grantor retained annuity trusts often play key roles. Understand why.

Your Legacy’s Instruction Manual: Trusts and How to Use Them

Trusts are helpful estate planning tools for people across the income and wealth spectrum; they’re not just for the ultra-wealthy. Hear Adviser Investments’ experienced wealth managers and financial planners use real stories to explain what trusts are and how they may benefit you.

4 Things to Consider When Choosing a Trustee

How trusts are managed is what really determines their effectiveness, meaning you’ll need to make sure you select the right trustee—someone trustworthy, prudent and agile enough to respond to your beneficiaries’ needs promptly over the course of their lives. To make a good choice, ask yourself these four critical questions. Read the post.

6. Federal Gift Tax and Family Gifting

Federal Gift Tax vs. California Inheritance Tax

Taxes are already complicated. Add gift and inheritance taxes to the mix and it can leave you and your loved ones feeling overwhelmed. Learn what states charge estate and inheritance taxes; and why some Californians could owe out-of-state inheritance taxes.

Advanced Strategies for Family Gifting and Lending

Gifting money and offering intrafamily loans are often excellent ways to invest in a loved one’s future, whether during the holidays or any time of year. But before you write that check, keep these tax and financial planning points in mind.

7. Probate Process and Intestate Succession

An Overview of the Probate Process. Who Needs It and Why?

The probate process exists to protect your estate plan wishes and loved ones. It’s likely, however, you’ve heard recommendations to avoid probate court at all costs. Yet there are numerous reasons why your family may need a probate judge after your passing. Explore six reasons and our seven-step probate process.

Intestate Succession: What Is It and How Do You Avoid It?

To expedite the distribution of your estate and increase your family’s financial security after your death, avoid intestate succession. The good news—only one document is required to circumvent intestate succession. Find out what it is.

8. Settling an Estate Checklist and Financial Checklist

Settling an Estate Checklist: 17 Critical Steps at a Difficult Time

Picking up the pieces after a loved one’s passing is challenging, yet someone must do it. If this role is in your future, or you’re putting your affairs in order, remember to complete these 17 critical steps.

What to Do After You Lose a Loved One: Our Financial Checklist

A loved one’s passing can be emotionally overwhelming—and then comes all of the responsibilities you may inherit. Managing the financial affairs of someone who has passed is a lot for any one person to handle. Our financial checklist breaks your responsibilities into a monthly timeline, helping you prioritize time-sensitive financial activities. Get organized.

In Summary

Establishing an estate plan may seem overwhelming at first, yet it’s a critical step to building financial security for your family and ensuring your wishes are fulfilled in the event of your death.

If you’re unsure how to proceed, seek guidance from experienced financial professionals who understand the process and can help you think through your approach.

Contact Adviser Investments anytime for assistance. We pride ourselves on being The Planner You Can Talk To.

Tax and legal information contained herein is general in nature, is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as legal or tax advice.  Personalized tax advice and tax return preparation is available through a separate, written engagement agreement with Adviser Investments Tax Solutions. We do not provide legal advice. Always consult a licensed attorney or tax professional regarding your specific legal or tax situation.

Our statements and opinions are subject to change without notice.  All investments carry risk of loss and there is no guarantee that investment objectives will be achieved.

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