Defensive Estate Planning: Avoiding Conflict, Abuse, and Litigation
Created on December 01, 2020
Navigating family dynamics and competing financial interests means that estate planning can be fraught with complications. Taking a defensive mindset can help avoid litigation, family infighting, hurt feelings, unnecessary expense, and unnecessary delay.
This program will explore strategies and techniques for defensive estate planning, and best practices for working with clients. The defensive estate planning approach means being proactive in attempting to resolve unforeseen issues relating to death and mental incapacity.
- Proactively plan to avoid will contests
- Prepare an estate plan where a contest is expected
- Avoid the loss of original estate planning documents, and prepare in advance for the potential misplacement of a will or advance directive
- Identify issues with joint account ownership and joint safety deposit boxes
- Properly draft a power of attorney so that it is not used as a device for financial exploitation or elder abuse
- Protect "spendthrift" beneficiaries from themselves
- Counsel clients on choosing a fiduciary
- Designate beneficiaries appropriately
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