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Estate Planning and Administration Archives

What are the estate taxes in Pennsylvania?

“Nothing is certain except death and taxes” is a well-known saying, and Pennsylvania and other states combine these certainties into one with what is known as “death taxes.” It is not an estate tax, but rather an inheritance tax that applies to specific property of residents of the Keystone State.

Can you be the legal guardian of someone over 18?

When a person turns eighteen in Pennsylvania, they become legally responsible for themselves. However, there are some situations in which a person isn't mentally, physically, or emotionally capable of this. In these situations, you may wish to become their legal guardian instead. Schimizzi Law, LLC, can help you learn the ins and outs of petitioning for guardianship so that you can help your loved ones.

Prepare for your annual estate plan review

You may be one of the many people in Pennsylvania who has taken it upon themselves to properly document their estate planning wishes. If so, you should feel very good about that. But, you should also ask yourself how long it has been since you have reviewed that plan. That's right - making an estate plan is only one part of what you need to do. This plan should be considered a living document if you will as it should evolve and change as your life and some laws change.

Understanding the prudent investor rule

Greensburg residents spend much of their lifetimes accumulating assets for the benefit of their beneficiaries. Placing such assets into a trust can generate income for said beneficiaries on top of already established trust assets. One of the main ways to build such income is through investments. While this can pay off in a big way, it opens the door for uncertainty based off a trustee's investment acumen

Estate planning and beneficiaries

With estate planning, there are a world of challenges that may arise and issues that you may need to consider. For example, you could be trying to decide whether a trust or a will is the right move, or you might be having a hard time naming an executor. However, it can also be tricky for some people to decide how their estate's assets will be distributed among beneficiaries. If you are facing this uncertainty, we know how important it is to carefully look into various details and make the right decisions.

Daughter and trustees at odds over sale of million dollar home

One of the main purposes of estate planning is to help people avoid having disputes arise amongst those that they will one day leave behind in Greensburg. Yet simply because the process of how one's estate is to be handled is outlined does not necessarily mean that problems will not arise in its management. Those empowered to handle the affairs of an estate may eventually find their interpretations of a testator's wishes to be at odds with those of his or her beneficiaries. 

What happens to your estate if you die without a will?

It is a question that you have likely heard asked by estate planning experts in Greensburg multiple times: have you written a will? Why would such a document carry so much importance that you should consider creating one while your end still seems to be so far away? The truth is that you do not know when you will die, and not having a will when you do takes the power to decide who will receive the assets and property that you have worked so hard to accumulate away from you and hands it over to the state.

What is a guardianship?

While it is important to create a will, there are many other aspects of an estate plan in Pennsylvania that also need to be completed. One of those is establishing a guardianship. There are several alternatives to this legal process, but guardianships, or conservatorships, have unique benefits that may fit your needs.

The importance of careful estate planning

If you do not have an estate plan, or are in the process of drafting a will or trust, it is essential to understand how vital it is to have a solid plan in place and carefully work through the process. At Schimizzi Law, we are very familiar with the benefits of creating a solid estate plan and we also know how difficult life can be for families when their loved one passes away without one. In Greenburg, and across all of Pennsylvania, numerous complications can be avoided by simply planning ahead.

Planning for your medical care

Deciding who should receive your possessions after you die is important, so considering your end of life options in Pennsylvania is a good idea. It may be even more critical to think about the health care decisions that may need to be made for you if there comes a time when you are unable to communicate your wishes. We at Schimizzi Law, LLC, often provide counsel on the various documents you may want to draw up in preparation for various health care scenarios.

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