Tag Archives: HIPPA

Back to Basics Fun Educational Review – Part Six – Estate Planning … No Fear of the Fancy Terminology!

Welcome back to Part Six of our “Back to Basics” series .. we hope you’ve enjoyed the First Five which started with all about “The Emergency Fund” in Part 1Part 2 being “Protection Planning” and Part 3 discussing All about Debt Planning or “The Good the Bad and the Ugly of Debt”, Part 4 Retirement PlanningPart Five, Back to Basics Education Planning and now “Estate Planning!”

As a reminder this is a high level Financial Planning Education like overview, starting with the basics of and we will continue into advanced topics in order of Planning Importance.  

So who needs Estate Planning?

In a word, everyone should have an Estate Plan and Estate Documents.

As your family complexity increases, the need for Estate Planning documents rises. Young families just starting out with no dependents that may be moving to another state in the very near future can have a brief hall pass as each state has its own unique rules, but the clock is ticking.

Couples with a dependent, you need an Estate plan!

Even with simple family situations, as we get older, statistically we get closer to utilizing these documents, thereby increasing our need.

Any further complexities, as an example multiple assets, multiple dependents, some type of unique family situation, you absolutely must have a good Estate Plan and Estate Planning documents.

Why do we need estate plan documents?

Without them you are leaving your wishes recklessly in the hands of the public domain via the court system for a prolonged timeframe and an unfamiliar person, (a judge), to try and guesstimate what your wishes would have been, using the general rules of the state you reside! Not good.

OK enough lecturing on who needs them and why, let’s take the complexity out of Estate Planning and make it very easy for you to prepare and complete the documents.

Rather than go into the complexities of all of the documents, keeping with our “Back to Basics” theme, we are going to go into what you need to think about to easily complete all of your Estate Documents. Don’t worry about the fancy legal and financial terms, if you can answer the following few questions, your Estate Documents can be easily completed …

So here we go!

If something happens to one of the couple, the general rule is the other is the primary default, hence the following terminology for decisions.

If something happens to both you and your spouse at the same time, Who will be in charge of administrating your estate and who is the backup person? This is called your executor.

If something happens to both you and your spouse, who will take care of your minor children? This is called guardian.

Assuming you and your spouse once again are gone, who will take care of the financial stuff for your minor children? This is called your Trustee and you’ll need at least one back up.

At what age do you want you’re now grown children, once again assuming you and your spouse are gone, to distribute financial assets? This is the terminal clauses of your trust, a very common age is 1/3 at age 25, 30 and 35 but parameters can vary widely. Trusts cannot be perpetual and therefore must eventually end.

Lastly, a very unlikely scenario, but one that should be answered, if everyone in your immediate family… you, your spouse, and minor children should perish, think of where you would like your assets to be distributed i.e. beneficiaries.

Other Documents

There are a few simple peripheral documents such as Power of Attorney (POA) and healthcare power of attorney that will need decisions, but we find if you have answered the above questions you likely already have a person that fits each of these roles.

One planning tip: Try and match the personality of your person to the role, i.e. the caring family person may be best fit for guardian, a good financial person trustee, a close relative with a very pragmatic attitude and calm and nature, your executor… as this is the most emotional role and comes first.

That’s it, each of those answers fit into a fancy legal term and your legal professional will know exactly how to formulate the appropriate language for your specific state. With the aforementioned answers your Estate Planning documents can be easily created.

Over the years we found many people fearful of the complexity of the documents, when in reality the majority of the problems are simply answering the questions above.

You are now armed with how to easily complete your Estate Documents, why you need them, how to be ready and how to easily complete!

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

Founder of J.K. Financial, Inc.

A Dallas Texas based fee only

Financial Planning Total Wealth

Management firm.

jkfinancialinc

street-cents

Estate Planning – Total Document Summary – Part 1

This is another redo of an article/post of several years back. We reference this so much we thought it a good idea to present it again, especially to those who may not have seen it originally – As a reminder, we like all of your Estate Planning Documents to have a virtual home in your Vault for easy, safe continued access! Ok – Let’s get going – again!

The term “Estate Planning” gets thrown around frequently, sometimes by us. Recently we tossed the term out and upon finding we did not have an article with a total summary of “Estate Planning Docs” an article was born.

Break in – If you have not reviewed your documents in five + years, now is a good time… let us know, as we should have a soft copy of file … if not…send us one please!

Estate Planning Docs

Will – Document that directs non-beneficiary directed assets (Ex ..house, property, cash and regular investment assets) and may create trusts for minors, names a Custodian, Executor and may also create trusts and Trustees for estate tax minimization and other uses (see final statement in article below on Trusts.)

Power of Attorney– Financial document that appoints someone other than you to make most financial decisions in your absence. Generally this document immediately becomes effective upon authorization, as opposed to upon disability.

Healthcare Power of Attorney – Document that appoints someone to make important healthcare decisions if you are unable. Think un-conscience and need to approve some type of procedure.

HIPPA – Allows your appointed person to receive medical information on your behalf. This is the ant-privacy document to counter unintended consequences of many of the recently enacted privacy laws.

Living Will- Cease and Decease – DNR – These titles are one in the same and are frequently confusing. This document allows medical professionals to NOT mandate all possible care, should you become deceased mentally, but not in body function. DNR stands for do not resuscitate, and is probably the most explanative title.

We will dig more into Trusts in a specialized post (Part 2)  just dealing specifically with that area of Estate Planning!

Now you have a great all-in-one spot for just what the heck all those “Estate Planning” docs are… and us too !

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

Founder of J.K. Financial, Inc.
A Dallas Texas based fee only
Financial Planning Total Wealth
Management firm.
www.jkfinancialinc.com
www.street-cents.com

JK Street Cents Logo

Estate Planning – Total document summary

The term “Estate Planning” gets thrown around frequently, sometimes by us. Recently we tossed the term out and upon finding we did not have an article with a total summary of “Estate Planning Docs” an article was born.

Break in – If you have not reviewed your documents in five + years, now is a good time… let us know, as we should have a soft copy of file … if not…send us one please!

Estate Planning Docs

Will – Document that directs non-beneficiary directed assets (Ex ..house, property, cash and regular investment assets) and may create trusts for minors, names a Custodian, Executor and may also create trusts and Trustees for estate tax minimization and other uses (see final statement in article below on Trusts.)

Power of Attorney– Financial document that appoints someone other than you to make most financial decisions in your absence. Generally this document immediately becomes effective upon authorization, as opposed to upon disability.

Healthcare Power of Attorney – Document that appoints someone to make important healthcare decisions if you are unable. Think un-conscience and need to approve some type of procedure.

HIPPA – Allows your appointed person to receive medical information on your behalf. This is the ant-privacy document to counter unintended consequences of many of the recently enacted privacy laws.

Living Will- Cease and Decease – DNR – These titles are one in the same and are frequently confusing. This document allows medical professionals to NOT mandate all possible care, should you become deceased mentally, but not in body function. DNR stands for do not resuscitate, and is probably the most explanative title.

We will dig more into Trusts in a specialized post just dealing specifically with that area of Estate Planning!

Now you have a great all-in-one spot for just what the heck all those “Estate Planning” docs are… and us too !

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

Founder of J.K. Financial, Inc.
A Dallas Texas based fee only
Financial Planning Total Wealth
Management firm.
www.jkfinancialinc.com
www.street-cents.com

JK Street Cents Logo