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Estate planning: An important step for every Kentucky family

It is not easy to consider one's own mortality or think about what might happen to personal property after death. Some may even feel that planning for these things is tempting fate in a way, and they may avoid estate planning because of it. Other Kentucky adults may not think planning for the future is necessary because they are not wealthy. These are all inaccurate assumptions about estate planning. 

In reality, long-term planning is an important step for every adult, regardless of age, income level and the size of the estate. Delaying this process can lead to legal and financial complications for loved ones and beneficiaries in the future. Getting necessary and important protection could be as simple as drafting a few documents, such as a will. Life is unpredictable, but it's possible to have more control over certain things when there is an estate plan in place.

What should be in your plan?

There is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all approach to estate planning. Each adult has different goals and objectives for his or her estate and property. You can custom-tailor your plan to suit your individual needs, but the following tools could be useful for your planning purposes:

  • Will – This is the building block of all estate plans. This is a basic document that outlines what you want to happen to specific assets, how you want property distributed and allows for the appointment of a guardian for minor children.
  • Trust – A trust is an estate planning tool that allows you to set aside assets for a specific use, such as the care of a minor child. Assets held in a trust do not have to go through probate.
  • Living will – This is a document that outlines specific types of health care you may or may not want in case you are ever unable to speak for yourself. This document offers more control and protection in conjunction with a durable power of attorney. 

Estate planning can be a difficult and confusing process. If you need to create a plan or update an existing one, you may find it beneficial to work with an experienced attorney during this process. Effective guidance ensures you have what you need to be able to look to the future with confidence, knowing your interests are secure and your beneficiaries are cared for.

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  1. Charles W. Dobbins, Jr.

    Charles earned his J.D. degree from the University of Virginia in 1974

    He was graduated from Washington & Lee University in 1970 with a B.A. with Distinction

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    Mark W. Dobbins

    Mark earned his B.A. from Emory University.

    He earned his J.D. from the University of Louisville.

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    Patrick T. Schmidt

    Patrick earned his B.S. in Accounting from the University of Kentucky in 1989.

    He earned his J.D. from the University of Kentucky in 1992.

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    Terrence L. McCoy

    Terry earned a B.A. from Dartmouth College in 1964.

    He earned his J.D. from Duke University in 1967.

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    Lisa Koch Bryant

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    Thomas graduated from the University of Louisville Business School with a B.A. in 1973

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    Sandra F. Keene

    Sandra earned her Bachelor of Health Science degree, with Honors, from the University of Louisville in 1982.

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    Elizabeth M. Jenkins

    Colgate University, B.A., Political Science, magna cum laude, 1983

    University of Virginia, J.D., 1992

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    Edward L. Galloway

    Ed graduated from Indiana University in 1967 with a degree in history.

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    Tacasha attended Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts during the summer of 2001, where she studied courses in law and psychology.

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    Ayala Golding

    Ayala received her J.D. in 1994 from the University of Louisville, Louis D. Brandeis School of Law, Louisville, Kentucky, where she was a member of the Brandeis Family Law Journal, and

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    Kacie A. Wilkinson

    Kacie A. Wilkinson recently joined Tilford, Dobbins & Schmidt, PLLC, where she practices in the areas of business law & transactions, real estate, estate planning and probate.

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    Bill earned his B.A. from Centre College in Kentucky in 1956.

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    Terrell L. Black

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