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Category Archives: Estate Planning

Basics of Estate Planning – Part Two

Goals of Estate Planning Here are four goals for every estate plan: Every estate plan should increase and preserve your property during your lifetime. This includes managing liquidity, building or increasing retirement benefits, and minimizing tax burdens. Every estate plan should provide for your beneficiaries after your death, with provisions tailored to each beneficiary’s specific… Read More »

Basics of Estate Planning – Part One

Putting together your estate plan is not as daunting as it might first seem, and it pays big dividends in the long run. Do you really want a judge deciding who will be the guardian of your children, or the State of Oklahoma dictating who will receive your property after your death? Chances are you… Read More »

The OkPOLST Form – What Is It?

The Oklahoma Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment – or OkPOLST – form is designed for patients who are seriously ill with life-limiting conditions and irreversible illnesses, including those who are frail and elderly. There is no age limit as the patient having capacity can sign or the patient’s legal health care representative may sign on… Read More »

Planning For Your Children

If you are a parent of a young child or children, having an estate plan in place is more important than ever. No one knows your child better than you do, and a proper estate plan should provide for his or her care and maintenance, ensuring that he or she will be properly cared for… Read More »

What happens when you die without a will?

Without a will or trust you have no say in the disposition of your own assets in the event of your death. Your assets will pass pursuant to Oklahoma intestacy laws and could even escheat (or revert) to the State. It is important to recognize that if you die intestate, i.e., without a will, your… Read More »

Small Estate Affidavits in Oklahoma

Effective November 1, 2017, the limit for Small Estate Affidavits increased from $20,000.00 to $50,000.00. This is a considerable plus for the distribution of small estates as it can avoid the necessity of a costly probate. In Oklahoma, there are two (2) types of Small Estate Affidavits. The first, authorized by 58 O.S. § 393,… Read More »

Estate Planning and the Special Needs Trust

A Special Needs Trust is a specific trust which ensures that a beneficiary remains eligible for Supplemental Security Income, Medicaid, and other government benefits. It also provides for distributions for medical care not covered by Medicaid as well as other enhancements to the beneficiary’s quality of life. Your will should provide your Personal Representative the… Read More »

Who Should Serve as Trustee of My Trust?

If those you have chosen as Trustee lack the ability or knowledge to implement your directions, then regardless of how well prepared your estate planning documents are, especially your trusts, your estate planning goals may fail. The following are some things to think about when you choose a Trustee: (1) Does your prospective Trustee have… Read More »

What to Do When You Lose Your Spouse

Losing your spouse is never easy. Here are some things to remember once you are ready to move forward: Obtain. You should obtain multiple certified copies of the Death Certificate when it becomes available. You are going to need one for every life insurance policy, and many of the institutions holding assets will require one as well…. Read More »

Guidelines for Acting Under a General Durable Power of Attorney

If you have been appointed to serve as an agent, also known as an attorney-in-fact, under a General Durable Power of Attorney, the principal has placed a great deal of trust in you. As the agent, your authority extends to the management of the financial and personal matters affecting the principal, as described in the… Read More »