Your Estate Plan the Way You Want It

Estate Planning involves more than just drafting documents. At the Riddle Law Group, LLC, we work hard to understand our clients’ needs and goals and make sure their estate plan is tailored to their specific needs.

I am M. Andrew Riddle, Esq., an attorney in East Cobb / Marietta, Georgia, and I work hard to help my clients protect and transfer their hard earned wealth to the next generation through a comprehensive estate plan.

A comprehensive estate plan will typically include:

  • A Will or Will substitute such as a Living Trust
  • A Financial Power of Attorney
  • A Georgia Directive for Healthcare which provides a durable power of attorney for healthcare and a living will.

Why should you plan your estate? If you are young, you must be sure your children will be cared for in the event something happens to you. If you are older, you will need Powers of Attorney and Healthcare directives in place so your family can assist you when the time comes. You will also want to be sure you hard earned wealth passes to the right people the right way and is not eroded more than necessary by probate costs.

It is tempting to go on the internet and print some forms and sign them. Beware that Wills in Georgia, like all states, have strict requirements for execution. A Will done incorrectly is not valid and is the same as having no Will at all. You will likely only draft an estate plan once or twice in your life. Isn’t it worth doing it right?

We at the Riddle Law Group, LLC, know that costs matter. All of our estate plans are done on a flat fee basis. You will know what the plan will cost before we start the work.

Contact us for a free initial consultation at 678-905-3032. Or contact us by email by clicking here.

5 Reasons You Should Plan Your Estate

There are many reasons to plan your estate. Here our top 5 that we at the Riddle Law Group, LLC, in East Cobb / Marietta, Georgia think apply to the most people:

  1. Transfer of Wealth. You worked hard to build your assets and you want to be sure they move to the right person or persons when you die. For example, most people believe if they pass without a will their spouse inherits everything. That isn’t true in Georgia if you have children, and the only way to be sure your spouse gets everything is with a will.
  2. Disability Planning. What if you get dementia or Alzheimer’s? What if you are in the hospital for a prolonged period? Who will manage your affairs? Who will manage your healthcare. A financial power of attorney and a healthcare directive are critical documents you must have as you age.
  3. Probate. With a well written will, probate in Georgia is a reasonable process.  Without a will, probate is more costly and more difficult. And as discussed in 1 above, it may not result in the distribution of assets you desired.
  4. Taking Care of Children. If you have minor children, who will raise them if you pass? How will the money you leave for them be handled? This can and should be resolved in a proper estate plan.
  5. Non-Probate Assets. Many assets will pass outside of your estate (i.e., IRA accounts, life insurance proceeds, etc.), but that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be accounted for as part of a comprehensive estate plan. That trust drafted for your child in your will does you no good if your life insurance proceeds are payable directly to your children. We at the Riddle Law Group, LLC, will help you get the details right.

Call us for a free consultation at 678-905-3032 or email us by clicking here.

About Riddle Law Group, LLC

 M. Andrew Riddle, Esq.

At the Riddle Law Group, LLC, we recognize that most if not all legal situations are highly personal in some way. Led by me, Georgia attorney M. Andrew Riddle, this law firm aims to help you and your family find the most effective, efficient and economical resolution to address your legal issue.

About Us — Attorney M. Andrew Riddle

I joined the Georgia Bar in 1999 and worked a well-known law firm in Atlanta for a decade where I eventually became a partner and led the firm’s estate planning practice. In 2010, I moved to the Riddle Law Group, LLC, where I could combine my experience writing wills with my passion for helping people manage their investments. In addition to writing wills through the Riddle Law Group, LLC, I manage a ‘fee only’ investment advisory service where we do not sell products or ever take commissions of any sort. Please visit the website of Rev Capital, LLC, to learn more. My unique experience and qualifications allows me to bring your estate plan together fully by insuring it integrates with your current investment strategy.

Tara C. Riddle, Esq., is ‘of counsel’ to the firm.

Our Philosophy

I concentrate the law practice on areas that grow, sustain and protect your family and estate. For your will, trusts and powers of attorney, you can expect the following:

  • Proactive, innovative representation: We recognize each situation calls for a unique approach. We have the practical experience and resources to obtain resolutions tailored to your needs.
  • Honest counsel and fair pricing: We discuss all of your legal options with you in detail and upfront so you can make informed decisions about how you would like to proceed. We offer reasonable rates, including flat fees for some services such as estate planning, which are discussed carefully with you so there are no surprises moving forward.
  • Personalized advocacy: We work individually with clients throughout the legal processes of estate planning and probate. Our attorneys make use of various technologies, as well as personal consultations to ensure you stay informed about the progress of your case.

In short, we provide the professional, sophisticated services you need with the empathetic, personal touch you deserve.

Contact Us For A Free Consultation · Attorneys Serving Clients From Alpharetta To Marietta

Our professional and client-focused approach allows us to build lasting relationships with clients who appreciate our approachable, diligent services. We invite your questions and offer free consultations. Contact us at 678-905-3032 today to get the conversation started. Located in East Cobb, we serve clients throughout the northern Atlanta metro area.

FAQs

Should I Consider a Living Trust?

A living trust is almost required in some states and is less valuable in others. In states where probate is particularly arduous or particularly expensive, a living trust is a valuable tool that allows you to avoid probate (if the trust is managed properly during life). In Georgia, probate fees are reasonable and the process is not overly difficult, so a living trust is a very personal decision. Reasons why you might consider a living trust are to avoid probate; to gain privacy as probate proceedings are public record; to simplify administration; and to hold assets such as real estate owned in states other than Georgia.

Are there Downsides to a Living Trust?

The primary difficulty we see with living trusts is people not keeping them funded properly. If you pass away with even one asset outside the trust, then we will have to probate your estate AND administer your trust. If you are older and your assets are settled, this is less of a concern. But if you are younger and still growing your assets, moving around, etc., it can be problematic.

Why do I need a Power of Attorney?

A power of attorney will allow someone to help you with financial transactions in the event you can no longer help yourself (but are still alive).  A common scenario is if you suffer from dementia or Alzheimer’s. Your appointed agent can pay bills on your behalf, deal with Social Security on your behalf, pay medical providers on your behalf, etc. In terms of life and disability planning, the power of attorney is arguably the most important document in your estate plan.

What is a Healthcare Directive?

The Georgia Healthcare Directive has two parts (four really, but two worth talking about here): the durable power of attorney for healthcare and the living will. The durable power of attorney is the person you appoint that can make medical decisions on your behalf if you cannot make them for yourself. They can consent to medications and surgeries, admit you to hospitals, etc.

The living will component of the healthcare directive tells your family your wishes should you be terminally ill and unable to communicate and are being kept alive by machines. This decision is often called the “pull the plug” decision. It is not pleasant to think about, but these are instructions your family will absolutely need should they face an end of life decision on your behalf.

What is Rev Capital, LLC?

Rev Capital, LLC, is a ‘fee only’ investment advisory firm run by Andrew Riddle and Bill Downey. Rev Capital, LLC, does not sell products and does not take commissions. We build portfolios for clients from stocks, bonds, and ETFs and charge a very low annual asset management fee. If the accounts don’t grow in value, we can’t make more money. Our interests are completely aligned with our clients and our clients will never feel the pressure to buy anything. No annuities. No mutual funds. No variable life insurance policies. Just real investment expertise.

Do I have to work with Rev Capital, LLC, to hire Riddle Law Group, LLC, to draft my estate plan?

Of course not! In fact, most Riddle Law Group, LLC, estate planning clients are not Rev Capital, LLC, clients at all. We don’t care who you work with for financial advice or whether you work with anyone. We will do all we can to deliver a comprehensive and practical estate plan.

If you are interested in learning more about Rev Capital, LLC, we are always happy to provide a free consultation in a separate meeting. But when you call on the Riddle Law Group, LLC, for an estate plan, that service is our only focus.

Can I leave my IRA to my estate?

Yes, but you must consider the tax implications. If you simply change the beneficiary designations in your IRA to your estate, that will send the money where you wanted it to go in your will.  However, it will also cause all of the income tax you’ve yet to pay on the IRA funds to come immediately due, which is likely to be very expensive. In general, leaving your IRA directly to your estate is a decision that should be made only after consulting a CPA or lawyer or both.

Does the Riddle Law Group, LLC, handle medicare or veterans benefit planning?

No, but attorneys in our office do so give us a call at 678-905-3032 and we will get you connected with attorneys that can help you.

Contact

Riddle Law Group, LLC

3535 Roswell Road, Suite 23

Marietta, Georgia 30062

CALL US FOR A FREE CONSULTATION: 678-905-3032.

Or Contact Us by e-mail below.