In the United States, the fight for full equality for LGBTQ individuals continues. While gay marriage is now legal throughout the United States, the lengthy battle for marriage equality has left many people with lingering legal issues. The absence of certain other protections in the law also raises unique estate planning issues which LGBTQ individuals may need to address.
Nash Bean Ford & Brown, LLP understands how the laws work for LGBTQ estate planning and we work hard to arm you with the legal tools you need to protect yourself and to protect the people who you love. Our Geneseo, IL LGBTQ estate planning attorneys will work with you to discuss your goals and your family situation so a personalized plan can be created for you. Give us a call today at 800-644-5345 to find out more. We can also answer questions about:
- Who should consider LGBTQ estate planning?
- What is involved in LGBTQ estate planning?
- How can a Geneseo, IL LGBTQ estate planning lawyer help?
Who Should Consider LGBTQ Estate Planning?
If you are a lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender, you should strongly consider LGBTQ estate planning. This is true whether you are married, whether you are single, or whether you are in a committed relationship. It is especially important for people who have family members, like parents or siblings, who may not be supportive of their gender identity or of their sexual identity.
LGBTQ individuals face many of the same estate planning issues as straight and cisgender individuals, including concerns about transferring property after death and making sure that no unwanted medical care is provided in the event of incapacity. However, there may also be other issues unique to a person’s LGBTQ status which make estate planning harder. For example, you may have concerns over whether your memorial will use the correct gender or over what will happen to non-biological children who have not been adopted but who you are raising as your own.
Whatever your specific needs are to protect yourself and to protect your family, an LGBTQ estate planning professional will help you to identify the right legal tools to ensure that you get the outcomes your desire. Whether during your life or after your death, the advanced plans you make with the help of a legal professional can shape your own destiny and the destinies of the people who you love.
What is Involved in LGBTQ Estate Planning?
Your estate plan needs to be designed specifically to meet your needs and address your concerns. While the nationwide recognition of gay marriage has made it easier for married gay and lesbian couples to ensure their partner is protected and their assets can transfer tax free, there are still issues which must be addressed by both married and unmarried individuals who are LGBT.
Some of the different components of your plan, for example, may include:
- Steps to ensure your child is cared for by a chosen guardian after your death and to ensure that a child is provided for financially.
- Advanced plans for a funeral and memorial in order to make sure your correct gender, rather than your birth gender, is recognized.
- Retirement planning, especially if a delay in the recognition of your marriage has made it more difficult for you to receive benefits under a spouse’s or partner’s work record.
- Estate planning to ensure your assets can transfer to your chosen heirs. If you worry about family contesting a will, there are tools you can use like trusts and accounts with joint ownership to eliminate this issue.
- Incapacity planning to ensure that you specify in advance who makes medical choices for you and what kinds of medical care you desire in an emergency situation.
These are just a few of the different components which you may wish to include in a comprehensive estate plan. With help from an attorney, you can address the issues that matter most to you and your family and ensure that the law provides the protection you deserve at the end of your life and after your death.
How can a Geneseo, IL LGBTQ Estate Planning Lawyer Help?
Nash Bean Ford & Brown, LLP understands that many LGBTQ individuals and families face continued challenges under unequal laws, and we work hard to make sure that your comprehensive estate plans makes full and effective use of the legal tools designed to help you. Give our Geneseo, IL LGBTQ estate planning lawyers a call today at 800-644-5345 or contact us online to learn more about the assistance we can offer.