Tuesday, March 13, 2007

We Went to the Lawyer Today

Wowza!! What headaches we had, and exhausted.

I am trying to set up a trust with my assets to make sure Jim is appropriately cared for in a home setting should I predecease him. I have promised him no nursing home. But I also want whatever is left over to go to my brother who has MS, because he also has serious medical needs.

We had to talk about the tax effects of this asset vs. that asset going into the trust, and an arrangement for selling my house and how anything outside of the “trust” that I will to Jim would go to Jim’s heirs, not my brother, unless he changes his will or the beneficiaries on certain accounts.

My head is really jumbled about this, and I am sure I will need another meeting with this lawyer (who is very good) to figure out how I am supposed to designate beneficiaries on retirement and other accounts and assets that allow me to do designate beneficiaries.

I have 2 very special people in my life, both with serious illnesses. Should I pass before them, I want to help take care of them. There is a lot of “trust” in the arrangement that I am setting up, but I do trust them. Well at least I trust Jim while he has mental capacity, as he does now. If that goes, then my brother is in charge of the trust for Jim. I hate to put that burden on my brother, but I have no one else to put in this situation, and the lawyer recommended against a professional trustee (like a bank) because of the fees.

My prayers are with both of them should I go first that they do the right thing by each other. I love them both, deeply. They both know that, and they will, I know, respect my wishes. The lawyer also knows that should I pass before Jim, there are some things Jim needs to do to make sure my wishes are honored. They aren’t legally binding. I can do little to “reach out from the grave,” as the lawyer puts it. But I can express my intent in my will, as a “reminder” to everyone involved.

By the way, I am not planning to go anywhere soon.


Linda&Napoleon(GA) said...

Dearest Venita:

Congratulations on getting these financial matters in order. You're wonderful to make sure that Jim & your brother are taken care of if you go ahead of them. That's a huge task you'll so be able to cross off your list.

And BTW, we're not ready for you to go anywhere yet either!

As always, you're in my thoughts & prayers...

Alice said...

Glad you are getting this legal stuff out of the way. And even happier that you aren't going any where soon. Sending hugs your way.