Texas Estate Planning

According to a recent Gallup poll, fifty percent of Americans do not have a Will. Ultimately, this means that when they Everyone knows that the primary purpose of a Will is to specify who will receive your property when you die, but that is just one of the important functions of a Will. A Will also appoints an Executor and may specify that they are appointed to act independently and serve with bond. These provisions can greatly simplify and reduce the expense of the Probate process. In Texas, a Will can provide for the creation of a Contingent Family Trust for the benefit of anyone who inherits and is younger than a certain age or is incapacitated. A Will should appoint a Guardian or Guardians for minor children, in the event that both parents pass away. Without a Will, the Probate court will have no guidance from parents as to who might be the most suitable person or persons to care for minor children.

Unsurprisingly, Wills are for dead people. Power of Attorney documents are for living people who are temporarily incapacitated or unable to handle their own affairs. In addition to Wills, a complete estate plan ought to include properly-executed Power of Attorney documents for finances and health care decisions. In these documents, a Principal (the person singing the document) appoints an Agent to act on his or her behalf in financial matters or to make non-emergency healthcare decisions. A Texas Directive to Physicians, commonly called a "living will" permits decisions about end-of-life health care to be made in advance so as to ensure these matters are handled in accord with the values and wishes of the declarant.

Consult an Estate Planning Attorney to determine what is best for you and your family.

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