Is Your House in Order? Seven things to do before things fall apart.

The holidays are quickly approaching! Time for food, family, fun…and lots of conversation. You'll undoubtedly spend time cleaning and decorating in preparation for your invited guests who come to enjoy all of the festive cheer. Will you be ready? And more importantly… Is your house in order ?

In the estate planning world, this time of year is perfect for family discussions regarding wills, assets, end-of-life choices, planned giving, and perhaps family-owned business succession planning. With the family all together, it's a great time to talk about things in an open and honest way. So start the conversations soon and ensure that things are in order as we move into 2015!

End-of-Year Planning Checklist

  • Start by reviewing all of your existing documents. Have there been any major life changes this year (births, deaths, marriage, divorce, relocation)?
  • Create or Update a Power of Attorney document that designates who may make decisions on your behalf for medical and financial decisions if you become incapacitated.
  • Review/Inventory your list of assets for tax and insurance purposes (have you purchased a home, do you have ample/appropriate insurance coverage)?
  • Check your beneficiary designations for 401K accounts, life insurance policies, etc. Make sure that beneficiaries are current and have correct contact information on file.
  • Speak with your financial planner and tax consultant(s). Make sure that you are taking the minimum required distribution amounts from retirement accounts and other taxable income sources.
  • Review succession plans for your family-owned business, revisit the appointment of corporate officers, review strategic goals, and prepare annual minutes.
  • Make charitable contributions by December 31 st! Planned giving can be monetary, but may also be a donation of your time, a product or service as well.

Talk with your family. Make important decisions. Enjoy the time and use it wisely, as we ALL have much to be thankful for.

MORTENSEN & REINHEIMER, PC is an established law corporation in Orange County. At Mortensen & Reinheimer, PC we know that some of the most important objectives in a lifetime are protecting what you have earned, and planning to provide for your loved ones. Our primary goal is to ensure that whatever step you are working towards or whichever phase of life you are in, we can help accurately reflect your desires in the legal perspective of it. Whether it is creating your estate plan, starting a business, handling the affairs of a loved one you lost, or dealing with the difficulty of divorce, our attorneys will work with you on a continual basis in order to effectively meet your needs.

Mortensen & Reinheimer, PC offers unparalleled service and is dedicated to providing each of our clients with the personal attention they need to successfully handle their legal matters. We are always available to answer your questions. Our attorneys will readily meet with you to discuss the various legal situations you encounter, such as changes to your estate plan, or new business opportunities. At Mortensen & Reinheimer, PC we build long-term relationships with each of our clients, striving to maintain their personal investments in the security and well-being of their families. When it is time for you to address your estate planning , business, probate or family law needs, we hope that you select an experienced attorney that you can respect and trust!

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