Letter from the President: July 2018
Dear M&B Clients & Professional Partners:
Since our last correspondence, a lot has happened! We’ve grown! We’ve added multiple offices and additional space to accommodate new attorneys, paralegals, and staff. Why the expansion?
Since 1960, we have prepared a lot of wills and trusts. Based on the age of our firm, and the care we have for our clients, we have a thriving practice that helps families navigate the difficult circumstances surrounding the death of a loved one. We have been able to see estate planning in action and have learned what works and what does not. From such view, to help facilitate a smooth transition between generations, here is your estate planning ‘To Do List’:
- Fill out the information under the “Location Lists” tab in your Myatt & Bell, P.C. (“M&B”) estate planning binder. Successor trustees and personal representatives spend a lot of time simply trying to find your important documents.
- Under the “Estate Planning Letter” tab in your M&B estate planning binder, there are two sections as follows: Exhibit A where you may designate beneficiaries to receive gifts of personal property and Exhibit B where you may designate your desires regarding burial and funeral. Unfortunately, we have had families fight over burial and funeral arrangements, so being clear on this section is especially important.
- Keep a list of your assets up to date and pay attention to the ownership of your assets. Otherwise, your trustee or personal representative is sifting through your mail, desk drawers, and cabinets trying to find current statements. Additionally, if you receive digital account statements, or maintain any online presence, then it’s also important to provide your successor trustee or personal representative with access to your online passwords. Finally, you may not want your successor trustee or personal representative to know all your assets during life; therefore, keep your M&B file up to date with your current assets. When our M&B file is up to date with your current assets, it makes administration flow more smoothly.
- At the right time, engage us for a yearly check up meeting. We can make sure that your assets are appropriately titled in trust and that your beneficiary designations are correct. We’ll also catch up with your current desires. We find that most clients will experience some stage of financial delegation, from a few days to years. The more time we spend understanding your desires the more personalized services we provide to your family and trusted successors. A few hundred dollars in planning at a face-to-face meeting every few years can save thousands when you and your family is most vulnerable.
We are passionate about planning because of the realities we experience upon the incapacities and deaths of our clients. From this experience, let us help you avoid many of the pitfalls others experience. Call Myatt & Bell, P.C., at 503-641-6262, to setup your annual review appointment. Taking this simple step can pay significant dividends in peace of mind when it is needed most.
-Justin R. Martin