Estate Planning Objectives

Identification Of Objectives In the Estate Planning Process

Identifying an individual's objectives is a critical step in developing an effective estate plan. Success in the estate planning process for an individual is measured by the extent to which the estate plan accomplishes the individual's objectives.

Objectives that estate planning may accomplish for an individual are illustrated by the following ten objectives:

  • 1. establishing a suitable form of ownership for holding property to be distributed to beneficiaries, such as ownership in a trust established for an underage beneficiary,
  • 2. expediting distribution of assets to beneficiaries following the individual's death,
  • 3. ensuring that an appropriate person or institution serves as executor of the estate or as trustee of a trust,
  • 4. minimizing the costs of administration of an estate or a trust,
  • 5. avoiding or minimizing estate taxes and income taxes,
  • 6. providing for an appropriate disposition of life insurance proceeds,
  • 7. ensuring that the estate has sufficient liquid assets to provide for the payment of debts, expenses and taxes,
  • 8. minimizing the risk of litigation over issues relating to the distribution of assets,
  • 9. blocking the application of legal requirements that impose undesirable burdens on the estate administration process, and
  • 10. ensuring that an individual's business is transferred to successors in a manner that facilitates continuous, effective management of the business.

Arlington, Virginia, estate planning lawyer, James D. Fife, works collaboratively with individuals in defining their objectives and designing estate plans that meet their particular needs. Contact the Law Office of James D. Fife today to schedule an initial consultation.