Create your will now for your family’s future

Do you have a will? If so, does your last will and testament reflect your wishes or will the fate of your estate be in the hands of the state?

A discussion was held recently with attorneys from the Atlanta firm, MendenFreiman LLP, during which attorney Paige Baker explained that establishing a will puts control of your assets and guardianship of your children in your hands.

For many – especially young people – the thought of preparing for one’s death is uncomfortable and something easily pushed to the back burner.

But, as the saying goes, two things in life are certain: death and taxes.

The most basic purpose of a last will and testament is that it directs how your assets are distributed upon your death and it lays out who will care for any minor children.

One of the most important tasks when creating your will is identifying an executor. The executor is the person responsible for executing the will. Very simply, this person is responsible for prioritizing and paying off any debts, winding down the business conducted during your life, making sure the appropriate taxes are paid, and then putting your assets into an estate account. This can get a little tricky if there are assets – such as real estate – in multiple states.  Each state has its own probate laws and procedures, so the executor will need to be able to navigate those waters.

Family dynamics are often complicated and sometimes messy, so it may be advisable to name an executor who has some emotional distance. It may even be a good idea to hire a corporate trustee.

If you should die without a will in place, what is called “intestacy,” the state will be the one to serve as executor of your estate. After all the debts and taxes are settled, the remaining assets will be distributed to your “heirs at law,” who will be determined by the courts at the time of your death.

Even though estate planning is important for protecting your assets and heirs after your death, life does go on. A will can be updated any time in response to changes in your family, your health, your assets or your priorities. In fact, it is a good idea to review these documents every three years to make sure they reflect your most current circumstances.

Please let us know how we can help you with any of your estate planning needs.

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Creating a successful succession plan is about protecting the future of a business and/or brand and ensuring there is a strategy in place to ensure your business continues to thrive.

After years of investing time, money and other resources, it’s imperative to prepare for this next stage in business and life. Poor planning can increase risks for stakeholders and tarnish legacies. Let’s make sure the next generation is well-equipped and ready to take your life’s work and family legacy to an even greater level of success.

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In such a fast-moving business environment, business owners need every advantage to succeed. Improving efficiency should be an ongoing part of your strategy for financial success, empowering you to make continuous improvements.

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Whether you run a small closely held business or a large franchise operation, maintaining a firm grasp of accounting and bookkeeping can be challenging. Between managing staff and overseeing daily operations, there is not enough time to dig into the books and make sense of the financials. You need to know the facts and the implications. – having precise, up-to-date information at hand means you always know your financial position so you can make informed decisions that keep your business moving forward.

The financial experts at Antares can create a custom menu of accounting and tax services perfectly catered to your business needs, including accurate and timely financial statements and reports, so you are always prepared to respond quickly to changing and challenging circumstances. Along the way, we provide clear feedback and financial guidance to help you predict trends and recognize issues, then make the necessary adjustments to sustain cash flow throughout the year.

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