Upon death, a decedent’s assets must typically go through the Probate process before they can be transferred to beneficiaries.  In many cases, the probate process may not place a significant burden on beneficiaries; however, there are a number of reasons to consider avoiding probate in the State of South Carolina.   Delays:  After appointment, a…

  Failure to Plan for Death:  Without a Last Will and Testament or Inter Vivos Trust, state law dictates how your estate will be divided upon death.  In South Carolina, a surviving spouse is only entitled to a portion of a deceased spouse’s estate if the decedent is also survived by children.  This applies even…

       Planning for incapacity is one of the most essential, and often overlooked, components of a complete estate plan.  A Durable Property Power of Attorney enables you to nominate an agent, and preferably a few successor agents, who can act on your behalf to manage your property and finances.  The Power of Attorney…

      I am often asked by clients about making lifetime (“inter vivos”) gifts to children and other family members to avoid probate and protect assets from being consumed by long term care expenses (e.g. nursing home care).  My short answer is that inter-vivos gifting is never the best option.       Medicaid…