What is commonly included in estate planning documentation in St. Petersburg Florida?

 

Florida estate planning consists of the bundle of assets and liabilities that  you own at time of your death. Estate planning is something many people do not think about or do when they are younger, and then often forget to do as they get older and have life activities keeping them from taking a moment to get their affairs written down, in the event that their loved ones are put in a place to take care of assets and debts at the time of their death.  A Florida estate planning attorney can help with the completion of these very important documents.

Estate plan documents.

An estate plan usually includes: 1) last will and testament with guardianship if there are minor children, 2) an advanced healthcare directive and a 3) durable power of attorney.

  1. A Last Will and Testament is important for the purposes of explaining where and how an individual would like their assets divided, debts resolved and end of life issues outlined. An experienced probate attorney can make sure a will contains the legally necessary language so that a person’s wishes can be honored at the time of their death. A Florida will must be prepared properly, signed, witnessed and notarized. Florida recognizes different types of wills including:
    • A Florida Pour over will is used when there is a revocable trust and instead of making the distributions to a single beneficiary or beneficiaries, the will generally make one distribution into the Trust.  This type of will requires all of the other key provisions mentioned but is unique in its function because it essentially transfers the duty to distribute the estate assets to the trustee of the trust rather than allowing the probate judge to do so via the last will under the charge of the personal representative.
    • A Florida Medicaid will is used to create a supplemental trust fund in order to allow a spouse who is receiving Medicaid benefits for long-term medical care to continue eligibility after a spouse passes away.
    • A Florida will that includes a testamentary trust is a last will and testament in Florida that adds a trust fund for children or other beneficiaries.  This type of Florida last will and testament creates a trust that becomes effective upon the death of the testator which is different from a Florida revocable living trust.
  1. An Advance Healthcare Directive is the document that details the type of care you want administered in the event you become disabled and cannot speak for yourself. In Florida this essential documentation is sometimes called a medical directive or advance directive, and covers you or family members regarding medical power of attorney and do not resuscitate orders and these documents fulfill legal functions so you need both.
  2. A Durable Power of Attorney designates another person to conduct business on your behalf when you cannot. In the event of disability all other powers of attorney become ineffective except for this one document, the durability of this document allows it to survive disability and is fundamental to estate planning.

Hire an attorney.

Estate planning is important to secure your assets, and keep loved ones from further undue hardship after a death.  The documents reveal end of life wishes, and direction on asset disbursements.  This legal planning should be undertaken with the assistance of an experienced attorney at Baby Boomers’ Barrister Law Firm in St. Petersburg Florida.

Baby Boomers’ Barrister Estate Planning & Elder Law

100 2nd Avenue S.
Suite 206N
St. Petersburg, FL 33701

Phone: (727) 565-4250

Sources:

https://www.flsenate.gov/Laws/Statutes/2018/731.201