All tagged wills

Guardian Panel: When you can't decide on one guardian

From time to time, I get a clients who has too tough of a time deciding on who the right guardian for their kids will be. In some scenarios, the best solution for that is a Guardian Panel. A Guardian Panel is a group of people who are named to make a decision together about who the guardian should be and/or where the children should live, at the time that the parents are unable to care for the children any longer. Anyone can use a Guardian Panel in their estate plan, but there are a few specific situations in which it especially makes sense.

How much does a simple will cost?

The most common question that I get and that I see online in different forums where people can ask legal questions is, “How much does a simple will cost?” The answer to that is that there is no such thing as a simple will, at least at my office. We create plans that involve a variety of documents based on the client’s needs, and we plan for incapacity as well as death. Another way I could answer that question is to ask: “How much does a conservatorship cost?” or “How much does a probate costs?” or “What is the cost of doing things the wrong way?” These are all risks that you take by approaching estate planning with the attitude that your situation is simple and that your estate plan should be cheap. So if you ask yourself what the costs are of a conservatorship, probate, or worse, screwing up your plan, you’ll see that a “simple will” actually costs thousands of dollars, and maybe even your family’s well being and your own legacy.

How to Get Your Aging Parents to Talk about and Do Their Estate Planning

As a Gen X kid with Baby Boomer parents, I have found that our generations have very different ideas when it comes to talking about death and money. Boomers often seem averse to discussing these matters, for many reasons. Sometimes they think it’s crass for their kids to be asking them about what they’re “getting.” Sometimes they feel shame about discussing money and death. Sometimes they were just raised to believe that discussion about money and death (like religion and politics) is impolite. Whatever the reasons your aging parents might have for being tough to crack when it comes to these discussions, I have some tips on how to get them to talk and do their estate planning.

How to name guardians for your kids

A huge percentage of parents who haven’t done their estate planning yet are stuck on who to name as guardians for their kids. Here in Portland, Oregon, so many people have moved here from other places, and so they might not have any family in town, and they might have moved here to get away from a family or cultural dynamic that they don’t want their kids to be a part of. This makes choosing guardians difficult.

The #1 Thing You Are Putting Off: Estate Planning [Do the Damn Thing podcast, with guest Candice Aiston]

Candice was interviewed on the Do the Damn Thing podcast to talk about the #1 thing that the podcast listeners reported that they were putting off: Estate Planning.

On the episode, Candice talks about the 3 documents that everyone over 18 should have in place, the additional documents that all parents should have in place, whether you should DIY your estate plan, why people put off estate planning, how to get started on estate planning, and so much more.