Elder Law of Georgia, Your Partners In Aging
Call Today for a Consultation : 470-201-5354

Gainesville Elder Law Blog

Estate planning with a firearm? You might need a trust

Few people in Georgia give much thought to their firearms when creating an estate plan, but they could be overlooking an important issue. Estate planning can not only protect the passing of a firearm to an heir, but doing it correctly can also keep heirs out of trouble with the law. Many firearms and other weapons are heavily regulated, and it is not enough to simply leave things up to chance.

Gun trusts provide important legal protections for gun owners and their heirs. This is particularly true when it comes to passing on Title II weapons. These include things like automatic machine guns, short-barreled shotguns, suppressors and more. Individuals who are not careful when transferring ownership of these items can be in violation of federal law. Instead of using a will to pass on a Title II weapon, gun owners should consider the benefits of the gun trust.

Probate isn't always a bad thing

There is no easy way to face the loss of a loved one. Whether their death came after a serious illness or was an unexpected loss, you and your family are probably dealing with a lot of difficult emotions right now. On top of grieving, you now have to handle your loved one's estate, which probably means going through the process of probate.

Probate is often held up as a scary and unnecessary process in Georgia, but you do not have to be scared. In many cases, probate is a relatively straightforward process that makes handling a loved one's estate much easier than it would otherwise be. This is true even if the deceased had a will that outlined his or her wishes.

Are you ready to file a Housebound or A&A claim?

If you are a veteran and have a disability, you may be eligible for compensation through a government program such as Housebound or Aid & Attendance.

However, applying for benefits can become complicated, and you may want assistance in preparing and submitting your claim. The first step is to determine whether you are eligible for one of these programs.

Elder law: Using a power of attorney responsibly

Although virtually no one likes to think of becoming unable to make decisions on their own behalf, this is a reality that many people deal with each and every day. This makes having a living will and power of attorney a good idea for just about anybody in Georgia, but especially those who are well into their retirement years. However, those who are tasked with making important financial decisions may need to better understand their role and how elder law applies to their situation.

In general, when a person chooses someone as their financial power of attorney, it means that the person granting the power has an enormous amount of trust in that person. The weight of this responsibility is usually not lost on the person who is left to exercise that power of attorney. Keeping funds separate and organized can help relieve some of that stress by not only making things easier for that individual, but also by creating an atmosphere that is difficult for other family members to second-guess.

Estate planning for parents of children with special needs

Most Georgia parents want to create a lasting legacy that they can one day pass on to their children. For parents of children with special needs, estate planning often involves more than just leaving an inheritance. Special needs trusts can perform specific and specialized functions to ensure the continued care of adults with special needs, even after their parents have passed away.

A trust might seem unnecessary when considering the $11.18 million lifetime estate tax exclusion. However, some essential programs and services -- like Security Supplemental Income and Medicaid -- have strict income barriers. Leaving an adult child an inheritance or even financially supporting them throughout their adult lives could leave them ineligible for these programs, forcing families to use up their assets first. This could leave adults with special needs without financial security during their later years in life.

Gifting estate planning for a lasting family legacy

Most people spend the last few months of the year thinking about their loved ones. For Georgia parents of adult children, this can be a difficult and overwhelming undertaking. Will their children use their inheritances wisely? How can they best provide for their children and grandchildren's futures? When facing tough questions like these, estate planning is often the answer.

Individuals who are in their 60s and 70s tend to be more focused on their wealth management and leaving lasting family legacies. The U.S. Trust Insights on Wealth and Worth conducted a 2018 study that found that 67 percent of people aged 50 or older primarily want to use their wealth for investing in the lives of their grandchildren and children. Unfortunately, doing so is difficult when adult children do not have estate plans of their own. It can be hard to pass on an inheritance without any assurance that an heir will use it wisely.

Young adults, are you taking care of estate planning?

After getting their diplomas, high school graduates usually have a million and one things on their minds. However, for all of the items on their to-do lists, estate planning rarely makes an appearance. While young adults in Georgia rarely see the point of crafting an estate plan, putting necessary protections in place is an essential aspect of leaving adolescence behind.

Contrary to popular belief, estate planning encompasses much more than what happens to a person's assets after his or her death. One of the most important aspects of estate planning is protecting a person's interests and wishes in the event that the individual is unable to do so. For teenagers, parents have the legal right to make important medical decisions on their children's behalf. Once they turn 18, parents usually cannot continue doing so.

Still need your veterans' benefits? We can help

The men and women in Georgia who have served in the armed forces often face additional hardships and burdens that may be difficult for the average person to fully understand. There are many veterans' benefits that can help you afford better long-term, necessary care related to your service. Obtaining those benefits, however, is not always straightforward.

Leaving the armed services and entering the civilian world can be a difficult transition. Many former service members end up struggling financially despite years of service, training and experience. The Veterans Aid and Attendance Pension is available for veterans who served during times of war, even if they did not necessarily engage in any fighting themselves. You may qualify if you have a disability or if you are currently low income.

How special needs trusts help during estate planning

Georgia parents who have children living with special needs face a million little worries every day. From wondering about their child's development to fretting about the future, the job can be overwhelming. However, with careful estate planning, most parents can feel well-assured about their child's continued care in the future.

Supplemental Security Income, Medicaid and even subsidized housing are all important services that many people living with disabilities utilize. However, since these are generally needs-based programs, ensuring the continued qualification even after a child becomes an adult can be tricky. And what about when a parent or other family member passes on, leaving that heir with a sudden influx of money that ultimately kicks the individual off of these services?

Email us for a Response

Begin Planning Today

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

Firm Location:

1730 Thompson Bridge Road Gainesville, GA 30501 Phone: 470-201-5354 Fax: 770-297-0707 Gainesville Law Office Map

Firm Numbers: