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Estate planning can provide for emergency situations after death

The benefits of estate planning for Florida residents cannot be overstated. In some instances, tax burdens can be reduced. Probate fees may be lowered or even eliminated. Importantly, the empowerment that one derives from having prepared an estate planning framework for precisely how things will work after death is usually very gratifying.

The gratification pertains mainly to knowing that one's heirs will be treated just like one would want it to happen. There are no false paths or lost inheritances that one has to worry about from the prospect of having the state's laws dictate how one's assets will be distributed. The feeling of empowerment and peace of mind can be enhanced even greater by doing some very specific "micro estate planning," as one financial planning expert puts it.

For example, if a married couple has young children, what will happen if the parents both die tragically in an automobile accident? A will can provide for a guardian of their person, but who will provide for the children in the few hours immediately following such a horrific tragedy? How can the children's security and well-being best be protected and assured?

One solution under Florida law is to provide, through the assistance of one's estate planning attorney, a special written directive that provides the details. It may say who shall step in, who the authorities must turn the children over to for immediate care, and such details of immediacy dictated by such an unlikely but potentially possible occurrence. In this way, there will be no possibility that the children will be further traumatized by suffering the upheaval of going with strangers and being put in an environment with which they are unfamiliar. When visiting with one's estate planning attorney, bringing up this topic is a valuable way to obtain an even greater degree of mental security over what will happen if unexpected events occur.

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