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West Virginia Estate Planning

To have a legally binding last will and testament in West Virginia, you must be at least 18 years old and mentally competent. Your will must be in writing, signed by you and also signed by two witnesses who watched you sign it. An estate planning attorney can work with you to create a last will and testament and other important estate planning documents.

Asset Protection Through Estate Planning

When most people think about estate planning, they think of the last will and testament, which primarily deals with the distribution of your estate after you die.

But estate planning can involve so much more. Your last will and testament, for example, can also be used to name a legal guardian for your minor children and to create a trust to manage your heirs' inheritances after you pass away.

On a much larger scale, estate planning can also include the development of long-term strategies designed to protect your money while you're alive, while also maximizing the amount you pass on to your heirs.

For example, if you are concerned about how much your estate will go to pay federal estate taxes after you die, then you and your estate planning lawyer may devise a strategy to donate a certain amount to charity each year and to make tax-free gifts to your heirs each year.

If you are a small business owner, your estate planning attorney can work with you to ensure that your personal assets, such as your home and retirement savings, are protected in the event your business is sued or must file for bankruptcy.

To properly protect your assets and help safeguard your financial future, your estate planning lawyer needs to have a complete picture of your financial situation as well as your short-term and long-term financial goals.

Your lawyer will also discuss other estate planning tools that may be appropriate, including:

  • Living trust
  • Financial power of attorney
  • Advance medical directives, including the healthcare power of attorney and living will

Find & Hire Local West Virginia Estate Planning Attorneys

Call at 877-913-7222 or complete the form on this page to use our free lawyer referral service. We can help you locate estate planning attorneys across West Virginia, including lawyers in Charleston, Huntington and Parkersburg.