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Estate Planning Archives

Health care directive most underused document in estate planning

Many people don't pause to think about the importance and necessity of having an estate plan. When Illinois residents do make time for estate planning, some usually neglect one crucial document: a health care directive. In fact, two-thirds of all Americans don't have this document in their plans and that may be a major error.

Estate planning for cohabiting seniors in Illinois

More seniors are choosing to live together rather than get married. There are a number of reasons for this, but these individuals in Illinois also need to take some time for estate planning -- especially since they're cohabiting. The rationale behind the jump in these statistics is that many seniors don't find marriage to be financially feasible. 

The benefits of life insurance in Illinois estate planning

There are some things that can bode very well when it comes to an estate plan. Illinois residents thinking about their estate planning decisions might want to know how life insurance can play a part in those plans. Life insurance, for one, is exempt from taxes, so when there is a sizable financial gain for beneficiaries, a testator may wish to give life insurance some important consideration. Life insurance policies can actually be used in creative ways in estate plans.

Why estate planning should include intangible assets

It is not easy to know what type of legal and financial protections may be necessary for a person in the future. This is one reason why estate planning can be complicated for some Illinois adults. When drafting estate plans and getting important documents executed, a person will find it helpful to think beyond his or her money and health care wishes and also consider digital assets.

Estate planning for unmarried, child-free Illinois residents

More and more individuals are choosing never to marry or to settle down. That doesn't mean they don't spend many happy years doing the things they enjoy, having solid careers and building fulfilling lives. Such Illinois residents should still consider giving thought to estate planning. Having one's personal affairs in order is essential whether one is married or not or whether one has children or not.

Estate planning and foreign assets

With the world getting technologically smaller, more people are investing in foreign markets. When it comes to estate planning in Illinois, residents who do have foreign assets need to be aware of how to handle them in their estate plans. Whether it's owning a castle in Europe, a vineyard in the foreign sun or high-end sports cars overseas, global assets need to be structured in such a way as to offset paying the highest taxes possible.

Estate planning: When Illinois residents have chronic illnesses

When people are dealing with a chronic illness -- or a beloved family member is -- there are things that should be discussed even when discussing them can be delicate. Life is unpredictable in the best of circumstances, but for Illinois residents who live with chronic illness, it may be even more so. But having a talk about estate planning may be one of the most important talks in these instances. 

FLPs and LLCs in estate planning

There are three significant tax issues that could affect an individual's estate plan. For Illinois residents thinking about estate planning, those issues include tax faux pas that could be financially costly in the long run. Not taking advantage of Family Limited Partnerships (FLPs) and Limited Liability Companies (LLCs), may thwart a person's ability to have control over investments and distributions of wealth.

Helping illinois women to be comfortable with estate planning

People may spend time thinking about their loved ones being all right and taken care of after they have died. Illinois women, especially, may worry about their children, and who will look after matters when they are no longer around to do so. A leading health care organization in Illinois recently told a number of women who attended a talk that estate planning is conducive to positive mental and physical health.

Changes can impact estate planning needs

Change occurs on a regular basis. The makeup of the Illinois family can change as the result of birth, death, marriage or divorce. Additionally, the financial situation that each family finds themselves in can change due to changes in income, investments, tax laws and a number of other factors. With this in mind, it is imperative that each individual also recognize the need to review his or her estate planning portfolio in order to analyze how these types of changes will impact the family and ultimate desires of the individual.