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Oklahoma Estate Planning
Most adults can benefit from having several estate planning documents in place, but the single most important item is arguably the last will and testament. Under Oklahoma law, you must be at least 18 years old and of sound mind when you sign your will. An estate planning attorney can help you draft the document.
Your estate planning lawyer can also recommend other tools that may be appropriate, including:
- A living trust, which is another way to distribute your estate after your death
- A financial power of attorney, which lets you name an attorney in fact who's empowered to carry out certain legal and financial actions on your behalf
- A healthcare power of attorney, which lets you name a surrogate to make medical decisions on your behalf if you're incapacitated
- A living will, which lets you explain your end-of-life decisions related to medical treatment, pain medicine and life-sustaining care
Wills & Trusts
As you may know, a last will and testament allows you to explain, in writing, how your estate should be distributed after your death. The document is also used to name an executor, who manages your estate and carries out the instructions in your will, and to designate a guardian if you have children under the age of 18.
But a will isn't the only way to provide an inheritance for your heirs. In addition to or in place of a will, you may want to use a revocable living trust. This is a legal entity into which you transfer ownership of some or all of your assets while you are alive. For the rest of your life, you can manage the trust (if you so choose) and benefit from the trust. In other words, you can continue to spend the trust's money and live in your home just as you would do if the trust didn't exist.
After your death, a new trustee takes over responsibility for running the trust and distributes the assets to your heirs according to your instructions. The advantages of the trust over a last will and testament is that it affords your heirs some privacy and faster access to the assets because the trust operates outside of the probate system.
An estate planning lawyer can evaluate your specific needs and help you determine if you'd be better suited with a last will and testament, a living trust or both a will and a trust.
Find & Hire Local Oklahoma Estate Planning Attorneys
Attorneys.com offers a free service that can help connect you with estate planning lawyers and probate attorneys across Oklahoma, including in Norman, Tulsa, Oklahoma City and Broken Arrow. Fill out the form on this page today or call us at 877-913-7222. We'll ask you a few simple questions, then quickly match you with an attorney in your area.