Champaign Estate Planning Attorney Presents Comprehensive Solutions

Extensive knowledge leading to effective asset-protection strategies

It is never too early to start thinking about your retirement needs and your legacy to your loved ones. The wealth you’ve accumulated is more than dollars and cents; it represents a lifetime of hard work to provide for yourself and your family. You have to make that wealth as secure as possible, so it goes as far as possible. In more than 30 years of legal practice, I have helped clients like you maximize the potential for their retirement and their bequests to their heirs. By implementing legal safeguards against liability and taxation, the James D. Cottrell Law Office, P.C. helps clients enjoy their wealth and pass it securely to their children, grandchildren, other loved ones and cherished causes.

How does asset protection work?

If you are like most people, the greatest threats to your wealth are liability and taxation. Liability refers to your exposure to lawsuits from injured parties and creditors. Individuals can protect their assets by purchasing liability insurance in the proper amounts to guard against foreseeable risks. We can examine your auto, homeowner’s and business insurance policies to determine if there are gaps in coverage and whether you need some type of umbrella protection. Small business owners, especially those who operate out of their homes and have not incorporated, may run the risk of losing personal assets due to liability for their business operations. We can help you build firewalls between your business and your personal wealth by incorporating your business.

We can also help you structure your assets to minimize your exposure to taxes, especially when you pass those assets to your heirs.

Wills and trusts provide comprehensive protection

Every adult should have a will, detailing how property is to be distributed upon their death. A clear, precise will ensures that your assets are transferred to your heirs according to your wishes and in a timely fashion with minimal loss of value due to delays.

However, a will is not always the most appropriate way to transfer wealth. Trusts have several advantages over wills. A trust can hold your assets during your lifetime and then transfer them to your heirs without the need for probate. Some trusts allow you to avoid taxes, so more of your wealth goes to those you love. Trusts also allow you to put certain conditions on the funds, if, for example, the beneficiary is unable to manage a large lump sum. Popular trusts for estate planning include:

  • Asset protection trusts
  • Bypass trusts
  • Credit shelter trusts
  • Charitable remainder trusts
  • Dynasty trusts
  • Irrevocable life insurance trusts
  • Medicaid planning trusts
  • Qualified personal residence trusts (“QPRT”)
  • Qualified terminable interest property trusts (“QTIP Trust”)
  • Revocable trusts
  • Special needs trusts
  • Spendthrift trusts
  • Testamentary trusts

My office provides highly response, personalized estate planning services, so you get a comprehensive estate plan that meets your specific needs.

Contact an experienced estate planning lawyer in Champaign, IL

When you are ready to create an estate plan, the James D. Cottrell Law Office, P.C. provides reliable, highly personalized service. We are motivated to design an estate plan that meets your specific goals for your retirement and your legacy. To schedule a consultation, call my Champaign office at 217-693-4905 or contact me online.