Estate Planning

For Everyone You Love and Everything You've Built

If something unexpected happens to you and you haven't planned for everyone you love and everything you have, the State of California has a default plan for you.

 

Sound scary?  Well, it can be. Those you love would have to deal with the red tape and bureaucracy of government procedures and regulations.

 

We at Sky Unlimited Legal Advisory help you understand the legal and financial consequences of not having a comprehensive Estate Plan to protect your loved ones ... and more.

 

Before meeting, we'll ask you to complete a Family Wealth Worksheet, which will help you understand what you own and what needs to be decided for the well-being and care of your loved ones and cherished belongings.  We'll meet for a Family Wealth Planning Session™, where we spend some time together reviewing this document.  You'll learn about our Planning for Life process and we will both decide if it makes sense to work together to design an estate plan that will best suit the needs of your family.

 

The foundation of your estate plan will often include a revocable living trust, which when done properly and maintained over time, should help your family to avoid the cost and delay of probate and minimize or eliminate estate taxes. 

 

At Sky Unlimited Legal Advisory, we do not offer a "one size fits all" estate plan.  We form a working relationship with our clients.  We educate you, take the time to get to know you and your family.  We will discuss your concerns, your goals, and will gladly and patiently answer all of your questions.  Our goal is to create an estate plan that is exactly right for you.

 

Our services include a no-charge three-year review to ensure that as your lives change, so will your estate plan to safeguard your assets for maximum protection.

 

If this sounds like the kind of relationship you're looking for, please call us at (650) 761-0992 to schedule your personal Family Wealth Planning Session™ today or schedule online now.


Having a will simply is not enough.  It doesn't guarantee the care of your children if the unthinkable happens!  See how we do it differently...

The strategies that are appropriate for protecting your assets are different for every family.  Check out our proven process that gives you peace of mind...

Our unique legacy process gives your loved ones a precious gift - a lasting expression of your love.  Find out what we offer with every plan... 



Estates Weekly

Articles from the Chief Counsel's desk.  Sign up for our newsletter to receive these in your email with additional discounts, offers and rewards.

7 Tips For Creating A Winning Business Plan

Far too many aspiring entrepreneurs jumpstart their businesses without taking the time to plan properly. Just as a builder uses a blueprint to ensure a new construction project will be structurally sound, a carefully researched and well-thought-out business plan allows you to determine whether or not your business concept will actually succeed and make money.

A solid business plan can not only serve as a roadmap to guide your company’s progress, but it can also give you an opportunity to test the validity of your business model, research the market, understand your competition, and avoid potential pitfalls. And if you are applying for a loan or seeking investors, a business plan is a must-have to demonstrate that you’ve fully vetted your business’ financial feasibility.

 

In the end, developing a solid business plan can be the difference between your nascent business’s success or failure. While you should consult with your Family Business Lawyer™ before you open your doors to ensure your company has the proper legal, insurance, financial, and tax (LIFT) foundation needed to survive and thrive, here are 7 tips for creating a winning business plan. 

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5 Ways DIY Estate Plans Can Fail And Leave Your Family At Risk—Part 1

Do a Google search for “digital wills” or “online estate planning,” and you’ll find dozens of different websites offering low-cost, do-it-yourself (DIY) and sometimes even free estate planning documents, such as wills, trusts, powers of attorney, and healthcare directives.

From LegalZoom® and Rocket Lawyer® to TrustandWill.com and FreeWill.com, these DIY legal documents may seem like a cheap and easy way to finally cross estate planning off your to-do list—and do so without having to pay a lawyer big bucks to assist you. After all, you’ve been able to prepare and file your taxes online for years. Is estate planning really that much different? And aren’t lawyers using the very same forms you find on these DIY document websites? 

 

An Inconvenient Truth

This kind of thinking is exactly what DIY and online estate planning services would like you to believe, but it’s far from true. In fact, relying on DIY or online estate planning documents can be one of the costliest mistakes you can make for your loved ones.

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Preventing Family Conflict And Disputes Over Your Estate Plan

No matter how well you think you know your loved ones, it’s impossible to predict exactly how they’ll behave when you die or if you become incapacitated. No one wants to believe that their family members would ever end up fighting one another in court over inheritance issues or a loved one’s life-saving medical treatment, but the fact is, we see it all the time.

Family dynamics are extremely complicated and prone to conflict even during the best of times. But when tragedy strikes a member of the household, even minor tensions and disagreements can explode into bitter conflict. And when access to money (or even quite often, sentimental items of furniture or jewelry) is on the line, the potential for discord is exponentially increased. Ultimately, there is no greater cost to families than the cost of lost relationships after the death or incapacity of a loved one.

 

The good news is you can dramatically reduce the chances of conflict in your family by working with an experienced estate planning lawyer who understands and can anticipate these dynamics. In fact, preventing family conflict is one of the primary reasons to work with us, as your Personal Family Lawyer®, to create your estate plan, rather than relying on do-it-yourself estate planning documents. After all, even the best set of documents will be unable to anticipate and navigate such complex emotional matters—but we can.

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One of The Greatest Gifts To Your Family Is The Plan For Incapacity

When it comes to estate planning, most people automatically think about taking legal steps to ensure the right people inherit their stuff when they die. Although that thought is not wrong, it also leaves out a very important piece of planning for life, and perhaps the most critical part of planning.

Planning that’s focused solely on who gets what when you die is ignoring the fact that death isn’t the only thing you must prepare for. Rather,  consider that at some point before your eventual death, you could be incapacitated by accident or illness.

 

Like death, each of us is at constant risk of experiencing a devastating accident or disease that renders us incapable of caring for ourselves or our loved ones. But unlike death, which is by definition a final outcome, incapacity comes with an uncertain outcome and timeframe. 

 

Incapacity can be a temporary event from which you eventually recover, or it can be the start of a long and costly event that ultimately ends in your death. Indeed, incapacity can drag out over many years, leaving you and your family in an agonizing limbo. This uncertainty is what makes incapacity planning so incredibly important.

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Why Putting Your Family Home In A Trust Is A Smart Move—Part 2

If you are like many homeowners, your home is likely your family’s most valuable and treasured asset. In light of this, you want to plan wisely to ensure your home will pass to your heirs in the most efficient and safe manner possible when you die or in the event you become incapacitated by illness or injury.

Indeed, proper estate planning is as much a part of responsible homeownership as having homeowners insurance or keeping your home’s roof well maintained. When it comes to including your home in your estate plan, you have a variety of different planning vehicles to choose from, but for a variety of different reasons, putting your home in a trust is often the smartest choice. 

 

In part one, we explained how revocable living trusts and irrevocable trusts work, and we discussed the process of transferring the legal title of your home into a trust to ensure it’s properly funded. Here in part two, we will outline the key advantages of using a trust to pass your home to your loved ones compared to other estate planning strategies. 

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How to Pass Down Your Family Wealth Legacy During The Holidays

As you likely already know, but may not have given much thought about, the most important inheritance you provide is so much more than the money you’ll leave behind, but also includes your values, insights, stories, and experience.

And, while those things are being passed on happenstance on the daily, we know that intentionally creating a Family Wealth Legacy requires more than happenstance. That’s why as a Personal Family Lawyer®, part of our unique planning process is to capture your legacy in recorded form through something we call a Family Wealth Legacy Interview. 

 

What we’ve discovered is that we can learn so much more than expected -- about ourselves and our loved ones - when we ask the right questions. 

 

So, this year, we invite you to ask your mother, father, and/or other loved one the 32 important questions below that can teach you valuable lessons about love, life, and what matters most. And, don’t just ask them. Record their answers to create your own Family Wealth Legacy. Or, contact us to schedule time for a comprehensive Family Wealth Planning Session this month, and we’ll create a Family Wealth Legacy as part of your estate plan.

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Why Putting Your Family Home In A Trust Is A Smart Move—Part 1

If you are like many homeowners, your home is likely your family’s most valuable and treasured asset. In light of this, you want to plan wisely to ensure your home will pass to your heirs in the most efficient and safe manner possible when you die or in the event you become incapacitated by illness or injury.

Indeed, proper estate planning is as much a part of responsible homeownership as having homeowners insurance or keeping your home’s roof well maintained. When it comes to including your home in your estate plan, you have a variety of different planning vehicles to choose from, but for a variety of different reasons, putting your home in a trust is often the smartest choice. 

 

Although you should consult with us your Personal Family Lawyer® to identify the best estate planning strategies for your particular circumstances, in this two-part series, we’ll discuss how trusts work (both revocable and irrevocable), and then outline the most common advantages of using a trust to pass your home to your loved ones compared to other planning strategies.

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The Basics On NFTs: The Newest Cryptoverse Craze

NFTs, or “non-fungible tokens,” are the latest sensation in the cryptocurrency universe, or as we like to call it the “Cryptoverse.” And if you haven’t heard about NFTs yet, now is a great time to learn because they are likely to be a big part of our collective future.

So what is an NFT?

 

In the most basic terms, an NFT is a cryptographic token that exists on a blockchain and is used to establish proof of ownership of digital artwork, videos, GIFs, collectibles, and other digital assets. While NFTs use the same blockchain technology that underpins cryptocurrency, NFTs themselves are not a traditional currency, though they can operate similarly to currency. Some people call them JPGs because they are literally graphic images, but they represent much more than just a simple JPG file.

 

NFTs have been generating a major buzz in the tech and art sectors for years now, but after Christie’s auction house sold a single NFT collage from the digital artist Beeple for a staggering $69.3 million this March, NFTs have begun making mainstream headlines.

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FAQs About Long-Term Care Insurance

Our nation’s population is aging at a faster rate than ever before, and collectively we are living much longer than in the past. In fact, according to Census Bureau projections, by 2034, seniors (age 65 and older) will outnumber children under age 18 for the first time in U.S. history.

With the booming aging population, more and more seniors will require long-term healthcare services, whether at home, in an assisted living facility, or in a nursing home. However, such long-term care can be extremely expensive, especially when it’s needed for extended periods.  

 

Moreover, many people mistakenly believe that their health insurance or the government will pay for their long-term care needs. But the fact is, traditional health insurance doesn’t cover long-term care. And though Medicare does pay for some long-term care, it’s typically limited (covering a maximum of 100 days), difficult to qualify for, and requires you to deplete nearly all of your assets before being eligible (unless you use proactive planning to shield your assets, which we can support you with if that’s important to you and your family).

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10 Things You Should Know About Living Wills

When it comes to estate planning, you’ve most likely heard people mention a couple of different types of wills. The most common is a “last will and testament,” which is also known simply as a “will.” But you may have also heard people talk about what’s called a “living will.”

Both terms describe important legal documents used in estate planning, but their purpose and the way in which they work are very different. Here we are going to discuss some of the most critical things you should know about living wills and explain why having one is an essential part of every adult’s estate plan and how to get yours created or updated. 

 

1. What Is A Living Will?

A living will, often called an “advance health care directive,” is a legal document that tells your loved ones and doctors how you would want decisions related to your medical care handled in the event you become incapacitated and are unable to make such decisions yourself, particularly at the end of life. Specifically, a living will outlines the procedures, medications, and treatments you would want—or would not want—to prolong your life if you become unable to discuss such matters with doctors yourself. 

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