The Eckert Byrne LLC Willow Plan
Who Is The Willow Plan For?
Ideal Willow Plan clients:
- Have varied assets that total less than the Federal exemption amount, but more than the Massachusetts exemption amount
- Value privacy and seek to avoid probate and reduce estate administration costs for loved ones
- Want loved ones, instead of doctors, to determine their incapacity/disability
- Desire to protect their heirs’ inheritance from creditors and/or divorce by creating ongoing trusts
- May want to include remarriage protections
- May have charitable goals
- May have large life insurance policies or retirement account balances that they would like to plan for
How Does The Willow Plan Help You?
Willow Plan clients benefit by:
- Reducing the Massachusetts estate tax and passing the most money to their loved ones (for married US citizens)
- Determining who will inherit their property, how, and when
- Reducing or eliminating the role of the Probate Court at their death, with fully organized assets
- Maintaining privacy by not having their plan made public through the court process
- Providing a seamless transition of assets during periods of incapacity/disability, with detailed instructions
- Providing remarriage protections (for married couples)
- Strategically incorporating one advanced planning tool (ILIT or SRT)
What Does The Willow Plan Include?
The Willow Plan includes:
- Revocable Living Trust (Separate or Joint)
- Certification of Trust
- Pour Over Will
- Health Care Proxy
- Living Will
- HIPAA Authorization
- Power of Attorney
- Basic Disability Trust Provisions
- Letter of Instructions to Health Care Agents & Trustees
- Basic Funding Instructions
- Detailed Asset Summary with Specific Funding Recommendations
- Recommendations for Beneficiary Designations for Retirement Accounts
- (1) Deed, Homestead, & Trustee’s Certificate (recording fees included -additional charges for multiple deeds and out-of-state properties)
- Letters to Update Homeowners Insurance (if applicable)
- Instructions for Successor Trustee
- Personal Property Memorandum
- Common Trust Provisions for Minor Children (if applicable)
- Guardian Appointment for Minor Children (if applicable)
- Letter of Instructions to the Guardians & Trustees of Minor Children (if applicable)
- Location List and Binder
- Notarization and Scanning of Documents
- Electronic Copies of Documents
- Customized Disability Provisions through a Disability Panel
- Customized Ongoing Protective Trusts for Beneficiaries
- MA Credit Shelter Planning for Surviving Spouse (if applicable)
- Remarriage Protections (if applicable)
- Guidance on Achieving your Philanthropic Goals (if applicable)
How The Willow Plan Works
The first step in the Willow process is a design meeting with one of our attorneys. This meeting will allow you to discuss specific decisions regarding your plan. Before the design meeting, the client will need to complete the PIF and provide payment. The client will also need to provide all of the documents requested in the PIF, including bank statements, deeds, etc.
After the design meeting, the client will need to review the flowchart created for any errors. A flowchart review call will be scheduled with an attorney to confirm any outstanding design or flowchart changes. Your attorney will also review your asset summary sheet on the call to ensure there are no missing assets.
Following the flowchart review call, any outstanding changes will be completed. The client will need to approve the revised flowchart before moving on to schedule the delivery meeting.
The next step in the process is the delivery meeting. During this meeting, the attorney will review the drafted estate plan with the client. The client will then sign the documents before a notary and witnesses. After the estate plan has been completed, clients are encouraged to continue an ongoing relationship via the firm’s Legal Checkup or Life & Legacy Review programs.