Compassionate Estate Planning and Probate Attorney in PetalumaMore than half a million Americans pass away each year without a will or estate plan, leaving the fate of everything they own to the state’s intestate laws. How can you be sure your wishes are carried out with your family and friends in mind when the unavoidable occurs? A comprehensive estate plan organized by you with the help of an estate planning attorney in Petaluma will ensure these difficult decisions are made thoughtfully and with your wishes in mind. Eric Gullotta is a trusted Petaluma probate lawyer who offers pressure-free, compassionate counseling services. He works proactively with each client to help tailor his services based on their desires, while working with what California laws will allow. His unique method of straightforward estate planning is effective and establishes a plan that will take the burden of administration from your family, securing their financial future. Contact Eric Gullotta at (707) 938-7234. We are standing by to take your call and answer your questions.
What Forms are Part of a Petaluma Estate Plan?Estate planning can definitely seem overwhelming. There are so many decisions to make and many different options to choose from. Because of this, many of us end up putting off having an estate plan time after time. According to statistics, as many as 68 percent of adult Americans do not have a Will. The excuses we make are lack of time or lack of knowledge surrounding estate planning. While these are valid reasons, the importance of having a solid estate plan in place can not be overstated. Having an estate plan is like having auto insurance, home insurance, or health insurance. While you certainly hope your house will never burn down, that you will never have an auto accident, and that you will never be hospitalized, as a responsible adult you plan for any eventuality. Having an estate plan is the same—you are planning for your eventual death, or an incapacitating accident or illness. While the specific documents you will need for your estate plan will be unique to your situation, in general, the following documents make up a comprehensive estate plan:
- Last Will and Testament
- Living Trust
- General Durable Power of Attorney
- Advance Healthcare Directive
- Durable Power of Attorney for Finances
What is an Advance Healthcare Directive?When you have an Advance Healthcare Directive in place, you can leave very detailed directions to a person you trust regarding your healthcare in the event of incapacitation. This particular estate planning form allows you to grant authority for your medical decisions to another person, while also letting you address more specific situations and stating how you would like them to be handled. If you were involved in a serious accident and were unable to make medical decisions, the named person in your Advance Healthcare Directive will make those decisions on your behalf. You can set forth in this document whether you would want heroic measures to be taken on your behalf, whether you would choose to be kept alive by artificial means, and whether your organs should be donated upon your death. You can specify whether you would choose to have pain medications, such as morphine, whether you would want to be placed on a ventilator, or whether you would want to receive nutrition via a tube. The goal of an Advance Healthcare Directive is to ensure your loved ones will have the capabilities to make decisions on your behalf and will make the decision you would want in the event of your incapacitation. At Gullotta Law Group we are dedicated to helping our clients fully understand Advance Healthcare Directives as well as all other types of estate planning forms.
Let Petaluma's Trusted Gullotta Law Group Give You Peace of MindPlanning your family’s financial future after you’re gone is a stressful process. And California State Law is incredibly nuanced—one wrong word or missing signature can change the entire effect of your will or estate plan. This is why so many Americans delay the process of planning until it’s too late. Eric goes to great lengths to make your experience in his office enjoyable. His lighthearted yet professional demeanor helps takes the edge off during one of life’s most serious talks. The entire process is easy and stress-free. He even offers fixed-fee pricing so you never have to watch the clock. When you leave his office, you will have peace of mind.
Who Needs an Estate Plan?An estate plan is a series of preparations that serves to manage your assets when you pass away. Included in these plans are:
- Management of assets including bank accounts, cars, property, and other items of value.
- Directives for health care decisions.
- Directives for the inheritance for heirs, distributed fairly and in accordance with your wishes.
- Assigning specific assets to third parties who would not normally receive them.