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Best Estate Planning Book?

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  • Best Estate Planning Book?

    I am relatively new to the world of estate planning. I plan on meeting with an attorney soon but wanted to educate myself a little beforehand. Does anyone have any good book suggestions or other resources? I was planning on hitting up the library or purchasing a few items if need be. thanks.

  • #2
    Living trusts for everyone

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    • #3
      Yes, so glad you asked! Estate Planning Smarts by Deborah Jacobs. Recommend with no reservations, highly thought-of in the CFP community, but written so that laymen (or laywomen   ) can understand.
      Financial planning, investment management and CPA services for medical and high-income professionals | 270-247-6087

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      • #4


        Estate Planning Smarts by Deborah Jacobs.
        Click to expand...


        Yep, this along with Beyond the Grave by Jeffrey Condon are a good use of your time prior to meeting with an ACTEC member trust and estate attorney.

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        • #5
          I agree with the above books.  Also Condon's other book, Living Trust Adviser.

          Before you meet with the attorney, consider whom you would choose as guardian for children, if any, as well as alternative guardians.  Spouses are usually joint and successor trustees, but you'll need additional successor trustees as well if there are children under the age of 30-35, and in general, you don't want the guardian to be the same person as the trustee.    After due consideration, and in conjunction with my attorney's advice, I decided to use a bank with a well-regarded trust department as successor trustee, because I realized that my siblings, while frugal, are not reliable enough to manage my finances.  I need to help them with theirs, so they won't be able to manage mine.  My wife's siblings... let's just say I don't think they are qualified either.

          Those books should give you additional questions that need to be answered before meeting with the attorney.

          Also fill out a living will / health care directive form.  That should be part of the process as well.

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          • #6


            Also fill out a living will / health care directive form.  That should be part of the process as well.
            Click to expand...


            And make sure you get the assets titled correctly and the beneficiary designations updated.  You buy a fancy stack of paper, but it's no good until it's funded properly.

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            • #7


              And make sure you get the assets titled correctly and the beneficiary designations updated.  You buy a fancy stack of paper, but it’s no good until it’s funded properly.
              Click to expand...


              Yes!   And that's a lot more time consuming and difficult than you would expect.

              The attorney should help you re-title your house.  The rest will be up to you, but you should be given instructions on how to title the various accounts.

              There are also lots of anecdotes about people who get the will and trust  papers drawn up but never sign the papers.  Based on my personal experiences, I suspect that the reason is that the attorneys never finished their work in time.

              So, start early, stay on it, and make sure to get all the assets and accounts re-titled, and double check all the TOD (transfer on death ) account beneficiaries, life insurance beneficiaries, etc.

               

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              • #8
                Best one is the one behind your estate planning attorney's desk

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