Comprehensive Estate Planning Lawyers in Willmar, MN Help You Minimize Taxes and Avoid Unnecessary Probate Proceedings
Serving residents of central Minnesota since 1892
Anderson Larson provides intelligent, thorough advice for clients seeking to prepare a will, trust or other property transfer device. We understand how tax and probate laws affect estate administration, and we guide clients through the process of planning for their families’ future. The experienced estate planning attorneys at our Willmar, MN office work diligently to create a plan to implement your final wishes.
What is estate planning?
Estate planning is the process of crafting a set of legally binding documents to preserve your assets and distribute them to your intended beneficiaries in an intelligent way. To accomplish this, we consider a number of factors, such as:
- The value of your property
- The types of property in your estate
- Your intended beneficiaries and their respective ages
- Tax implications and ways to legally avoid paying estate or inheritance taxes
- Alternatives to passing all of your property via will or intestacy, such as trusts or gifts during your lifetime
We also discuss the probate process and apply a cost-benefit analysis as to whether there are reasonable alternatives for various property and intended beneficiaries.
Which do I need — a will or a trust?
The simple answer of whether you need a will or a trust is it depends on your specific circumstances. Our attorneys take the time to discuss the different ways each can be used and help you decide which tool helps you meet the ultimate goal of estate planning — preserving your assets and distributing them intelligently.
We believe every person should have a will, even if the estate is small, because circumstances change and events can occur without warning. Your estate includes everything you own at the time of your death, and your will serves as a map for distributing your estate.
A trust, on the other hand, essentially removes specific property from your estate and preserves it for one or more beneficiaries. This can be a useful feature for clients who want to avoid the probate process for most of their assets. Living trusts, special needs trusts and inter vivos trusts have different purposes. Your trust can take effect during your lifetime or after you die, depending on its purpose and your written intent.
What is a living will?
A living will is not the same as a simple will or a last will and testament. A living will is a healthcare directive, sometimes referred to as an advance directive, for healthcare. A written healthcare directive conveys your wishes to others in the event you become incapacitated or otherwise unable to make or communicate medical decisions on your own. You may also appoint an agent to make the final decisions and communicate for you.
Which type of power of attorney should I establish?
Like trusts, various types of powers of attorneys are available, and the type you need depends on your purpose:
- Durable power of attorney
- Limited power of attorney
- General power of attorney
For estate planning purposes, people tend to select a durable power of attorney. This document allows you to appoint an agent to oversee your financial affairs and facilitate treatment for your personal care and well-being in the event you become incapacitated. The distinguishing feature of a durable power of attorney is that it survives your incapacity, whereas the other types lose legal effect immediately when you become incapacitated.
Guiding business owners through succession planning
Whether you’ve worked most of your life to build a business or only recently joined the world of entrepreneurship, your goal is likely to ensure that your business survives and thrives after you pass it on. Succession planning for your business may be a part of your comprehensive estate plan, or you may be considering passing your business on or selling it before you die. Whatever your choice, our experienced estate planning and business law attorneys collaborate to guide you through the planning process.
Arrange an estate planning meeting with an experienced Willmar, MN attorney
Anderson Larson in Willmar, MN is dedicated to delivering quality legal services and prompt, courteous client care while giving you value for your money. We are across the street from Rice Memorial Hospital, with on-street parking and nearby public transportation. Call 320-235-4313 today or contact us online to make an appointment to fit your schedule.