This is the season of giving and making a difference by giving back to our communities, which can be extremely rewarding both to the recipients and to the “giver”.  We all have the power to make a difference in the lives of others, we just have to make the effort to do so.

In addition to making a difference in the lives of those in your community, take this opportunity to consider how you can make a difference in the lives of your loved ones.  Consider what would happen to your children if you become incapacitated, or if you die unexpectedly, and could no longer take care of them.  Maybe you have considered this, and perhaps you have purchased life insurance, or have some money saved to provide for their needs.  You may have even talked to other family members who have agreed that they would help out, and even take them in, if you were no longer around.

Have you taken the appropriate legal measures to be sure that your plan can actually be carried out if need be?

Legal documents such as a Last Will and Testament to appoint a guardian for your minor children, and a Revocable Living Trust to create a trust and name a trustee for your children, in the event of your death are the basic documents you should have in place.  Within those documents, you can provide as much, or as little, detail and guidance for your chosen guardian and trustee as you would like.  In addition to having proper legal documents, you must be sure that your life insurance and retirement account beneficiary designations are appropriate for your circumstances.  For example, you should not name a minor child as a beneficiary on any policy or account.

Without these documents and carefully planned beneficiary designations, your wishes for your family will likely not be fulfilled.  Or if they are fulfilled, it may be at a greater financial cost and emotional hardship to your family than it would have been with the proper documents in place.

So, as you are helping an elderly neighbor with their shopping, or bringing your children with you to purchase non-perishable food items and pack baskets for Thanksgiving, or simply saying “thank you” to someone whose hard work is often overlooked, take the time to think about what you want for your family.  Then call us at (847) 253-8800 to start the process of preparing those important legal documents, which could make all the difference in the world to those who mean the most to you.

Should you have any questions about estate planning or would like to schedule a free initial consultation, please contact Waltz, Palmer & Dawson, LLC at (847)253-8800 or contact us online.

Waltz, Palmer & Dawson, LLC is a full-service law firm with various areas of service to assist your business, including: Employment Law, Intellectual Property, Commercial Real Estate, Business Immigration, Litigation and general Business Law services. Individual services include Estate Planning, Wills and Trusts, Probate, Guardianship, Divorce and Family Law, Collaborative Divorce & Mediation.

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