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Five Frequently Asked Questions About Estate Planning in Georgia

Posted by Steve Worrall | May 27, 2023

  1. What is the purpose of estate planning in Georgia? Estate planning in Georgia serves several important purposes. It allows individuals to protect their assets, plan for the distribution of their estate after death, appoint guardians for minor children, minimize taxes, and ensure their wishes are followed regarding medical decisions and end-of-life care.

  2. What documents are essential for estate planning in Georgia? Key estate planning documents in Georgia typically include a Last Will and Testament, which outlines how assets are distributed after death, and a Financial Power of Attorney and Healthcare Directive (or Living Will), which designate someone to handle financial and healthcare decisions in case of incapacity. Trusts are also commonly used for additional flexibility and control.

  3. What happens if I die without a will in Georgia? If someone dies without a valid will in Georgia, their estate is subject to intestate succession laws. This means that the state will determine how assets are distributed, following a predetermined order of priority. Generally, assets are first distributed to the surviving spouse (if no children) or divided between spouse and children, and if none exist, they may go to other family members.

  4. Are there estate taxes in Georgia? Georgia does not have a state-level estate tax. However, it's important to stay updated on tax laws as they can change over time.

  5. When should I review and update my estate plan in Georgia? It's recommended to review and update your estate plan in Georgia whenever there are significant life events or changes in circumstances. Examples include marriage, divorce, the birth or adoption of a child, a significant change in assets, or a relocation. Regular reviews, every few years (we recommend at least every 3 years), are also advisable to ensure your plan remains aligned with your wishes and any changes in the law.

Please note that estate planning laws can vary, and it's crucial to consult with an estate planning attorney in Georgia to receive personalized advice based on your specific situation. Reach out to us here or call us at 770-425-6060 and let us help.

About the Author

Steve Worrall

As a sandwich generation kid himself (caring for both children and aging parents), Marietta Georgia Estate Planning Elder Law & Probate Attorney Steve (Stephen M.) Worrall KNOWS the struggles you are facing as you raise children, balance the demands of your job, and take care of your aging parent...