• Subscribe to the AG's RSS Feed
  • Join the AG's FaceBook
  • Follow the AG on Twitter
  • View the AG's YouTube Channel
  • View the AG's Tumblr Page

Estate and Financial Planning

You've worked a lifetime, accumulating assets along the way. Planning now can help you avoid losing your house and emptying your bank account in the event of a disabling illness or sudden death. Planning now also will help in the smooth transfer of your estate to the special people in your life.

Estate planning involves more than writing a Last Will and Testament. Many consider transferring ownership of assets to a "Living Trust," which they or a designated trustee control during the person's lifetime. A "Living Trust" is different from a "Living Will," which expresses your wishes about being kept alive if you' become terminally ill or seriously injured.

Since the approach taken will depend on your personal situation, we suggest that you consult with your accountant, your lawyer or other appropriate expert in financial and estate planning. Be wary of "free" estate planning seminars whose business is to sell legal and financial services even if your personal situation does not justify it.

The American Bar Association Guide to Wills and Estates answers the most common questions about estate planning. More information is available from the pamphlet: State Bar of California: Do I Need A Living Trust?

Some things to consider in your financial/estate planning:

  • Select the best type of estate/financial plan such as a "living trust" and "last will and testament"
  • Determine your cash flow and the value of your assets. It is very difficult to develop a financial plan if you do not know how much income you will receive now and in the future.
  • Calculate your net worth. In addition to your regular income and expenses, identify your assets and liabilities in your overall calculation.
  • Anticipate changes, such as illness, inflation, retirement, etc. These changes could affect your financial status.
  • Medicare/Medicaid Benefits (Social Security Administration)
  • Medical services and long-term care costs are important considerations in end-of-life care planning. Although there is often no easy or simple way to determine how to meet these future needs, it is important to learn what kind of financial assistance you may be able to receive under your health insurance plan, disability insurance plan and Medicare/Medicaid Benefits (Social Security Administration).
  • Place a personal copy of your plan in a secure and accessible place. Also, keep vital information and records in a safe and accessible location. Consider using the Where to Find My Important Papers Worksheet
  • Make sure your loved ones know of your estate and financial plan requests.
  • Avoid surprise costs and let your family know your wishes by planning funeral arrangements.

RESOURCES

Note: This listing is intended as a starting point and provided for informational purposes only. There are many other resources available that you may wish to research. Listing here is not an endorsement of the organization or its web page content. If you have questions, please consult with your physician, lawyer, accountant or other appropriate person.

Protecting Consumers

State & Federal Laws

You can search California laws on the Internet

California Law

View a checklist of significant California consumer laws

CA Dept of Consumer Affairs

Search U.S. laws on the Internet at U.S. Code

U.S. Code

Megan's Law

California Registered Sex Offender Database

Search Now

Megan's Law information is also available in these languages:

Site Navigation

Translate Website

  • Google™ Translation Disclaimer

This Google™ translation feature is provided for informational purposes only.

The Office of the Attorney General is unable to guarantee the accuracy of this translation and is therefore not liable for any inaccurate information resulting from the translation application tool.

Please consult with a translator for accuracy if you are relying on the translation or are using this site for official business.

If you have any questions please contact:Bilingual Services Program at (916) 324-5482

A copy of this disclaimer can also be found on our Disclaimer page.

Select a Language Below / Seleccione el Idioma Abajo

Close this box or use the [ X ]