Myths about Estate Planning

The Law Office of Wendy S. Marcus

Top 6 Myths about Estate Planning

For most people, their only interaction with the law is either through planning their own estate or taking care of an estate for someone who has passed.  There are many myths about estate planning. Let us dispel some of them. 

Myth #1: I will have to pay estate taxes

For the vast majority of people, this is FALSE. As of 2018, only estates worth more the $22 million for a married couple, or $11 million for a single person, are subject to the Federal Estate Tax. 

Myth #2: If I have a trust I don’t need a will

FALSE. If you have a trust you need a will as well. You can have a will without a trust. 

Myth #3: Trusts are difficult to set up and maintain

FALSE. Trusts are a popular estate planning tool that can accomplish many goals. With a lawyer's guidance, it is not a difficult process. 

Myth #4: If I have a power of attorney, I don’t need a will or trust

FALSE. A power of attorney is only valid as long as you are alive. It cannot distribute your property, nor is it able to help manage your affairs after your passing. 

Myth #5: I can make medical decisions for my spouse if they are incapacitated

FALSE. Without a healthcare power of attorney,  if your spouse becomes incapacitated, your spouse’s entire family gets to weigh in on the medical care received.

Myth #6: I don’t need a will because my children have God parents, so the God parents automatically become the legal guardians

FALSE. God parents are not automatically made the legal guardians of your children. If you don’t have a will, a court will decide who the legal guardians of your children will be.  A will is the only way to name a legal guardian for your child, in the event of your passing.  

If you would like to learn more, I can help with your estate planning. Please contact my office to set up an appointment.

Voice: 505-662-7071

Fax: 505-412-4303

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