1st - planning mainly dealt with planning at death. Now...

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While the first chapter in the text is self- explanatory, let me try and apply the principles expounded there to real life scenarios. What has been constant in last forty years in the area of estate and financial planning has been change. So it is imperative that you gain a firm grasp on the tools of estate and financial planning so that you can guide your client through the planning process. The laws that you must be more or less familiar with are the state laws dealing with transfer of property at death and incompetency (in California, the Probate Code) and the federal law dealing with estate and income taxation. I say "more or less familiar" because it is the attorney's job to be "very" familiar with these same subjects. It will be up to you to recognize the potential problems and recommend legal advice appropriately. Not only have these laws been changing and developing, another social phenomenon has been occurring. We are all living longer. Forty years ago, estate
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Unformatted text preview: planning mainly dealt with planning at death. Now that we realize that there could be a longer life after retirement and that we could also lose our mental capacity before we die, estate and financial planning more and more covers the areas of wealth accumulation, conservation and incompetency in addition to planning for death. Of course, the only certain event is death; only the time of it is contingent. Though the client might resist, the event of death should be addressed first in any plan before addressing the more uncertain, speculative events of incompetency, etc. That being said, the most important step in estate and financial planning is the first step as the biggest enemy of any plan is procrastination. You should always respond to the client's hot button in order to develop a relationship. That should allow you to gain control and to properly prioritize the client's needs...
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