Many people believe it is an activity reserved to those who are wealthy. In reality, estate planning is a process for everyone. It includes you and your family and anyone else who is important enough for you to include in your plans for the disposition your property and assets.

Estate planning is more than that, however. It also addresses important issues for the future, should you become unable to make decisions or care for yourself.

Again, estate planning is even more than all of that. It can also include plans for how your assets will be managed during your lifetime if you are incapacitated, as well as plans for distribution of your property and assets during your lifetime.

While it is important for everyone who owns a home or has children or a spouse to sit down with an estate planning attorney and craft a will, there are other tools that provide additional protections for you and your loved ones. There is a wide variety of useful trusts (discretionary trust, A/B trust, QTIP/QDOT trust or domestic partner trust), for instance, as well as durable powers of attorney, advance health care directives and grant deeds that can help you secure the future.

An experienced Torrance estate planning attorney will assess your situation, help you understand your options and then help you create an estate plan that gives you peace of mind. For many people, a will and health care directive is sufficient, while others might need more sophisticated tools to shelter assets from inheritance taxes.