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Why Estate Planning Is Important

Creating an estate plan allows you to provide specific instructions about how the management of your property and final affairs upon your death or sudden incapacitation. Without a valid plan in place, you leave the fate of your estate in the hands of the court, which could potentially cost your surviving loved ones a lot of time, money, and stress.

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Common Misconceptions About Probate

When a person dies in Washington State, probate is usually needed to establish the validity of the decedent's will and settle their estate. This may require filing the will in probate court, securing estate assets, paying debts, taxes, and valid creditor claims, and distributing assets to rightful inheritors.

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Are Handwritten Documents Valid in Estate Planning?

There are some common reasons why people handwrite a will or other estate planning documents rather than typing them or having them prepared by an estate planning attorney. They may be wanting to save money. They may be running out of time and attempt to create a will as they are dying.

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FAQs: What Needs to Be Done When Someone Dies

When a loved one dies, it’s left to their family and loved ones to handle their estate. Ideally, they will have left behind a comprehensive estate plan, including a will or trust, that assigns an executor and lays out their wishes for what should be done with their assets.

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Second Marriage & Estate Planning

People who divorce don’t always stay single but often remarry. While this may provide some much-needed companionship and comfort to their lives, it can also pose challenges when it comes to estate planning, especially if there are children from the previous marriage.

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Important Documents to Have in Place Before Dementia Sets In

You may be familiar with the acknowledgment required of a last will and testament that the maker is “of sound mind.” It makes sense that someone lacking the mental capacity to make decisions also lacks the legal capacity to do so. Dementia presents many barriers in this regard. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, more than six million Americans currently live with Alzheimer’s. That number is expected to more than double in the next 25 years.

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The Importance of Using an Attorney Instead of Online Forms

Thousands of people fall into the “do-it-yourself (DIY) estate planning” trap every year. While the notion of using free online forms to create an estate plan might sound appealing to many, the DIY approach to estate planning can prove to be a costly mistake down the road.

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Will Medicaid Pay for Assisted Living?

Assisted living is a concept of care that falls below nursing home care, which focuses more on health care rather than on programs to assist older individuals in carrying out the functions of daily living. Given the costs, many want to know if Medicaid will cover any of the expenses involved.

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Wills vs. Trusts: Which One is Right for You?

There are benefits and drawbacks to both wills and trusts. Ultimately, deciding which one is best for you depends on what your goals are, as will as your situation and preferences.

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Important Tips for Executor of an Estate

Dealing with the loss of someone you care about is never easy, especially when you also have a duty to carry out the decedent’s instructions to manage their affairs and wishes. Being appointed as an executor of an estate means that you need to take on significant responsibilities when the person who you named as the executor dies.

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