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What Is Estate Planning?

  • By: Starr Law Offices
  • Published: January 10, 2017


In this video blog, you’ll get the answer to this frequently asked question: What is estate planning?

Hi, my name is Ted Starr. I’m an attorney in Pinellas Park, Florida and I’m here to answer some questions. The question is: What is estate planning? In my office, my view is that estate planning consists of four major documents; a will, a power of attorney, a living will and a healthcare surrogate. A will is your instruction to your family about what happens to your assets when you pass away. A living will is your instruction to doctors about your end-of-life care. A power of attorney has nothing to do with lawyers. It has to do with giving your family members, if they’re named in the power of attorney, the authority to handle your assets while you’re alive. If you pass away, the power of attorney stops or dies with you. And a healthcare surrogate is somebody to make medical decisions for you when you can’t make them. Those four documents comprise a basic common estate plan. If someone has a lot of assets or are worried about tax consequences, those documents need to be amended or added to with more complicated documents. But for most people, those four documents are a good estate plan.

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