Estate Planning

What is estate planning?

Estate Planning is a process of determining how to most efficiently meet your goals of transferring your assets after your death. An estate is generally comprised of assets such as a home, real estate, bank accounts, vehicles, personal belongings (household goods, etc), retirement plans/investments, and life insurance. Your debts are also part of your estate.

What estate planning documents should I have?

Every client’s estate, goals, values, and desires are unique. While there is no set template that will cover every client’s situation, there are a few basic documents that just about every client should know about and likely have. These documents include: 1) A Last Will and Testament; 2) A Financial Power-of-Attorney; 3) A Healthcare Power-of-Attorney; and 4) A Living Will. Please see below for a brief explanation of each such document.

Your estate may benefit from additional estate planning tools, such as a trust or changing the manner in which some assets are owned. Estate Planning can be quite complex, with a need to consider various laws, taxes, costs, family situations, health issues, and other factors. Here at Putman Law Offices, we engage in estate planning on a daily basis. We would greatly appreciate the opportunity to discuss your goals and desires, and to create an effective estate plan designed just for you. Please call us at: (419) 238-2200 to schedule your estate planning appointment!

What is a Last Will and Testament?

A properly-drafted Last Will and Testament (“Will”) can be the foundation of many estate plans. Through a Will, an individual can state to whom he/she wants their assets to be transferred to upon their death, who you would elect to serve as guardian of your minor-child(ren), and who you want to handle your estate. All assets subject to probate will be governed by your Last Will and Testament. Attorney Putman has a tremendous amount of experience and expertise in properly drafting Wills designed to efficiently meet his client’s needs and desires. Please do not hesitate to call us at (419) 238-2200 to plan your own Will.

What is a Financial Power-of-Attorney?

A Financial Power-of-Attorney provides for the management of your finances during your life at a time when you are unable or unwilling to manage them yourself. This document authorizes another person to manage your finances in your place until such time as your are able to manage them yourself. For example, if you were ever in a coma, developed dementia or developed Alzheimer’s Disease, you may be unable to conduct your financial affairs. A financial power-of- attorney can fill that void without resorting to the cost and time necessary for a Court to appoint a Guardian.

What is a Healthcare Power-of-Attorney?

A Healthcare Power-of-Attorney is a legal document wherein you appoint another individual to make healthcare decisions for you in the event you are unable to make such decisions for yourself. As an illustration: If you were in an automobile accident resulting in your broken leg and a coma, your appointed Healthcare Power-of-Attorney would have the ability and authority to make healthcare decisions for your benefit – such as authorizing surgery on your leg, etc. A properly drafted Healthcare Power-of-Attorney can go a long way in avoiding the cost and time of having a Guardian appointed in such situations.

What is a Living Will?

A Living Will allows you to direct your medical team with respect to artificial life-support in the event you are rendered permanently unconscious or suffer from a terminal illness with no cognitive ability. When you are in such a condition and unable to relate your desires to your doctor, your Living Will acts as your advance directive to speak on your behalf. This document not only allows you to control such a situation, but also can provide family members and loved ones with a peace of mind that they do not have to render such a decision on your behalf.

Are other estate planning documents recommended?

Each person offers unique aspects to their estate plan. Differences in wealth and debt, family make-up, desires regarding distributions, tax considerations, and health concerns are only but a few issues that merit consideration in planning one’s estate properly. Other documents may very well be advisable – such as a Trust Agreement, Deed regarding real estate, and similarly-related documents. At Putman Law Offices, we strive to not only take the time, concern and effort to learn about each individual client, but also to help each client understand the “what’s” and “why’s” of every step in their estate planning. We look forward to helping you plan your estate, and ask that you please call us at (419) 238-2200 to schedule your estate planning appointment.

Family Law - Northwest Ohio

We will help you navigate the rules, regulations, and court procedures involving the family unit. While some family law matters may be handled without counsel, processes such as divorce and child custody often require the expertise of a skilled attorney.

Real Estate Law - Northwest Ohio

Buying a home or any other piece of real estate is a major financial event. Cutting corners to save a relatively small amount of money is certainly not advisable! A real estate attorney such as Attorney Shaun Putman can help a purchaser in many manners.

Personal Injury - Northwest Ohio

We specialize in personal injury issues from auto accidents, motorcycle accidents, truck accidents, and more. Being hurt can cost you much more than medical expenses. We will help you understand your rights and your next move in a lawsuit or legal complaint.