When the subject of estate planning comes up in conversation in California, someone often mentions the goal of avoiding probate. But what exactly is probate, and why is it something to be avoided?
In a recent post, the importance of having a California living will was discussed as part of one's estate plan. The importance of doing so was brought to light recently by the tragic situation involving former NBA star Lamar Odom.
In an earlier post in this blog we talked about the importance of updating a California estate plan in the event of a remarriage. If one fails to do this, one of the results may be the application of California's omitted spouse statute.
When most Californians think about estate planning, they probably think about wills, trusts and the disposition of one's property after death. But careful estate planning also includes planning for the possibility of becoming incapacitated during one's lifetime. One of the most important tools in planning for incapacity is the living will, also known as an advance health care directive.
As this blog previously addressed, for most families, a basic California estate plan does not have to be complicated. In most cases, a basic will or trust is sufficient to provide for the distribution of property after death.