These clients were an unmarried couple in their fifties. They had no children between them or from previous relationships.
This couple wanted to provide for each other without creating community property as they are not legally married. We created a Trust for the girlfriend and a Will plan for the boyfriend. The Trust outlined a portion to be left for the boyfriend should he survive her, and if he did not, everything was to be split evenly between her nieces and nephews. His will outlined that his estate be left to her trust as he did not have any outside family members to leave his estate to.
Her Trust plan contained the following:
• Pour-Over Will;
• Financial Power of Attorney;
• Healthcare Power of Attorney; and
• Healthcare Directive.
His Will plan contained:
◦ A simple Will;
• The same Power of Attorney documents; and
• Health care documents.
This works for this couple because they cannot use the joint federal and state tax exemptions as they are not married.
Their plan allows them to leave their estates to each other, while avoiding probate on her end, and providing for a simple probate on his end as his estate is just to be funneled into the trust at his death.
The Power of Attorney documents provide the couple with designations for individuals to take care of them in case they become incapacitated.
We prepared the Health Care Directive for end of life decisions and to take the mystery out of what the couple would want to happen to them if they were in a permanent vegetative state.
Need estate planning help but not sure where to start? Click the link to check out this free presentation I put together that will answer all your questions (it’s basically the talk I give at potential client strategy sessions):
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