McKinney, Texas Estate Planning Attorney

In very general terms, estate planning is arranging for the distribution of your property during your lifetime and at death.  A critical part of estate planning is creating documents that outline your wishes for distributing your assets after you die.  But equally as important is planning for issues that might arise during your lifetime.  For example, how do you want your property treated as you enter a marriage?  Who should handle your affairs if you become incapacitated and are unable to make your own financial or medical decisions?  Will you need government assistance with health care as you age? Do you need assistance in caring for a loved one who is elderly or has special needs?  All of these issues are part of the broader concept of estate planning.

It is a common misconception that estate planning is important for only those with money or who are advanced in age.  This myth is a cruel deception.  No one knows when they will die or become incapacitated.  Who will care for your children if you and your spouse become incapacitated or die unexpectedly?  By investing the time now to plan your estate you could possibly save your loved ones months if not years of agony and literally thousands of dollars in court fees and/or estate taxes.

Every individual has an estate plan. It is sometimes off-handedly said that “if you don’t have an estate plan, the state government has one for you.”  As an additional point it could be said, “and you might not like what the state government has in mind.”  If you do not have a formal written will, trust or other planning device in place, your estate plan is created by what is called the "intestate succession" statutes of the state in which you reside or own property.  So the question is not whether you will have an estate plan, but whether you will have an estate plan of your own selection or one imposed upon you by law.

What is an estate plan?  An estate plan is a written expression of how you want your assets to be owned, managed and preserved during your lifetime and how you want them to be disposed of upon your death.  It may include numerous documents for different purposes.  The pivotal document in most plans is a will, or alternatively, a living trust.

Unfortunately, many people have neither a will nor a living trust which would identify their intent and desires after their death.  They become so involved in their daily activities that they give little thought to the consequences of their demise.  And even those who do realize the importance of estate planning to protect and provide for their dependents often delay acting, and then become incapacitated or die prematurely leaving dependents unprotected.  Families can be financially devastated and ripped apart by this procrastination.

So, your choices for estate planning are as follows: do nothing or prepare a will or a living trust.  Mr. Davis can assist you in beginning the estate planning process or help you fill in holes or update your existing estate plan.

Please contact our office for an appointment.  We are located at the intersection of Plano, McKinney, Allen and Frisco, Texas, just 30 minutes from downtown Dallas, and provide legal services to individuals in the North Dallas, McKinney, Frisco, Plano, Richardson, Addison, Lewisville and Carrollton areas of Collin, Denton and Dallas Counties.

For more information on estate planning, please visit our estate planning FAQ page.