Estate Planning

Protecting Your Hard-earned Estate for Your Loved Ones

Estate planning strategies from Blakeslee Rop can preserve your home, savings and retirement accounts, and other assets for your children and heirs, assuring that the things you've worked hard for go to your chosen beneficiaries.

Without proper planning, when you die the money and assets you've saved up over a lifetime will be distributed according to the parameters set forth in Michigan state law. While this may seem acceptable on the surface, the reality is that often too much of a person's estate gets siphoned off to pay court and legal fees, taxes and creditors. Very little is left for the loved ones left behind and you'll have no control over how the assets are distributed.

But this doesn't have to be the case. Estate planning attorneys from Blakeslee Rop can use a variety of estate planning tools to give you control over who receives your money and assets after you're gone and minimize the amount used to pay fees, taxes and debts. The firm has over 30 years of experience in estate planning and can custom tailor an estate plan for your particular needs, no matter what size your estate is.

Blakeslee Rop estate planning attorneys can assist with:

  • Wills — Informs probate judge and your heirs how you want your assets distributed. Though a will can be contested and does not keep assets out of probate, everyone should at least have a will in place.
  • Living Wills & Medical Directives — Tells physicians and hospitals what treatments you want or don't want used when you are incapacitated and unable to speak for yourself, including when to terminate life support in the event of a coma or incapacitation. Also assigns someone to make health-care decisions on your behalf when you cannot.
  • Trusts — Used to keep assets out of probate and creditors' hands while giving the trust creator control over how the assets are used and who receives them after the creator's death.
  • Living Trusts — Used to keep assets out of probate and gives the trust creator control over who receives the assets, but trust creator can revoke the trust during his/her lifetime and, therefore, does not provide protection against creditors.
  • Special Needs Trusts — A trust designed to hold assets that will pay for care and upkeep of a person with special needs without making the beneficiary ineligible for Medicaid.
  • Trusts for Minors — A trust designed to hold assets for a minor child and control use of those assets until the child comes of age, ensuring responsible use of the assets.
  • Estate Tax Avoidance Planning — Various estate planning tools are used to strategically minimize taxes on an estate and maximize the amount of estate available to heirs.
  • Asset Protection Planning — Various estate planning tools are used strategically to protect assets from creditors and lawsuits.
  • Probate Avoidance Planning — Various estate planning tools are used strategically to keep assets out of probate where a decedent has little control over them.

Take advantage of our 30 years of estate planning experience and ensure that your hard-earned money and assets go to the people you care most about. Call our office and speak to an estate planning attorney today: (616) 866-9593.

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