Frequently Asked Questions About Texas Estate Planning
When do I need an estate plan?
It is a good idea to create an estate plan when you have personal and financial goals in mind. This plan will protect your assets and help manage your life should you ever become incapable of making your own decisions or facing creditors. If you do not create one, you could die “intestate” and the Texas courts will determine what happens to your assets. It is also a good idea when you buy a home, get married, have children or have significant assets. If you or a loved one has an estate smaller than a certain amount, there is also a small estate affidavit that may apply.
What does an estate plan include?
At Doehring & Doehring, we advise clients to have a basic estate plan — we can help you determine what other documents and planning you may need based on your lifestyle. You would want materials that establish the distribution of finances and property, who will make health care decisions for you, tax planning and power of attorney if you are incapable of making financial decisions. Even for small estates, these plans are essential to help avoid or minimize probate by showing that the estate’s value does not exceed a certain amount.
What If I do not have a medical power of attorney?
In the case of a medical emergency or illness, not having chosen a medical representative for yourself can have various outcomes out of your control. The courts may appoint a guardian for you that handles your care, food, supervision and is responsible for your well-being.
What If I do not have a durable power of attorney?
Without a chosen representative for your estate, the financial decisions regarding your property and assets will fall to a court-appointed guardian. This can be the same as the guardian appointed for your medical needs, or a different person selected from the Texas courts.
Do You Have Questions About Estate Planning?
Our team of Houston estate planning lawyers can help you with questions regarding these estate planning FAQs estate tax, trusts, appointing an executor, wills and amendments to a will. Call 866-456-2361 to set up a complimentary consultation or reach out with our online form to get started.