Estate planning involves planning ahead for your future and for the future of your family. When considering estate planning, too many people have the wrong mindset. They may think, “I don’t have much money and few assets; I don’t need estate planning.” This mindset is wrong because at its center, it is about things. True estate planning is about people – your family and loved ones. It is about designing the legacy you want to leave behind.
Michelangelo Mortellaro is an Estate Planning Attorney in Tampa, Florida, who takes great pride in helping individuals and families plan for the future and cope with the challenges of aging. Our estate planning services provide comprehensive legal assistance with wills and trusts, asset protection, Florida probate, Medicaid planning that involves long-term nursing care, durable powers of attorney, living wills, disability planning, business succession planning and other related needs.
Florida Wills & Trusts
No one wants to leave behind a legacy of debt and hardship for their family. Making the proper arrangements now can leave your family in a better position to handle your final wishes and other matters. As an estate planning attorney in Tampa, Mortellaro Law will begin your journey by helping you craft a will. A will is a legal means to clearly and precisely communicate your wishes for distributing your assets. You may also appoint guardians for any minor children.
Without a will, the Florida probate court will be charged with handling your assets and even appointing guardians for your children. Strangers will be in charge of your personal affairs instead of your family. Your wishes are not known; therefore, they cannot be granted. This can be an extremely frustrating situation for your family and loved ones.
Another important consideration that your estate planning attorney in Tampa will help you with is establishing a trust. These are also misunderstood by most people – many believe a trust is not needed because they do not possess great wealth. In fact, trusts can be as helpful for the average person as for a high-net worth individual. They can provide legal protection and provision for a wide number of situations, including:
- Managing and controlling investments to protect and provide for beneficiaries
- Avoiding court-supervised probate of trust assets
- Protecting trust assets from creditors
- Managing unique assets
- Controlling life insurance policies
- Funding stock redemptions or purchases
- Providing a legal means for charitable gifting that can reduce income taxes and benefit your family
- Helping with future Medicaid eligibility
- Providing structured income to a surviving spouse
- Reducing income taxes
- Sheltering assets from estate and transfer taxes
- Providing for a special needs family member or loved one
An estate planning attorney in Tampa such as Mortellaro Law can explain more about each of these and other types of trusts and how they can provide considerable benefit to you and your family. Contact Mortellaro Law in Tampa today for more information or assistance with Florida estate planning.
Florida Durable Power of Attorney & Living Will
Other important legal estate planning documents your estate planning attorney in Tampa will discuss with you are a durable power of attorney and a living will. A durable power of attorney authorizes someone you choose to handle certain matters on your behalf in the event you become incapacitated or otherwise unable to handle your own affairs. The “durable” designation means that it remains in effect after your incapacity. This is generally used to handle financial or healthcare matters.
A living will is somewhat different in that it spells out the medical care actions you wish or do not wish to be carried out in the event you become incapacitated and unable to make these decisions for yourself. For example, you may stipulate that you do not wish to be placed on life support. You can list as many instructions for your care as you wish in a living will. The durable power of attorney goes hand-in-hand with your living will, in that some situations cannot be foreseen. If you do not have specific instructions in a living will for a certain situation, the person named in your durable power of attorney to make medical decisions for you will choose the appropriate care.
Durable powers of attorney and living wills help you plan for medical emergencies and other situations when you become mentally unable to function and carry out your own affairs. They provide your own instructions and wishes to help eliminate confusion and uncertainty when troublesome circumstances arise. This is incredibly comforting to your loved ones, and it shields them from the pain of making these tough decisions without knowing your wishes.
An estate planning attorney in Tampa from Mortellaro Law can help you craft both of these documents and explain more about common issues that each one can cover. Call today to schedule your estate planning consultation at our Tampa office.
Other Means for Designing Your Legacy
Designing a legacy for your family means creating a future where their needs are met, their assets are protected and your final wishes are clearly expressed. Preparing these important legal documents now makes it much easier on your family in the future. The above elements of estate planning are basic provisions that almost everyone needs. But there are many other provisions to handle other needs and circumstances. They can include:
- Special Needs Planning
- Planning for Long-Term Care
- Planning for VA or Medicaid Benefits
- Business Succession Planning
Mortellaro Law has an estate planning attorney in Tampa available to share more about how these and other measures can create a solid, enviable legacy for your family long after you are gone. The time to begin planning for the future is now! Contact us at 813-454-0595 to schedule your free consultation.
Meta Title: Estate Planning Attorney in Tampa | Mortellaro Law | Tampa, Florida
Meta Description: Michelangelo Mortellaro is an experienced estate planning attorney in Tampa who provides comprehensive estate planning, elder law, tax planning, VA & Medicaid planning and other services. Contact Mortellaro Law today for a free initial consultation.