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Estate Planning Terms You Should Know

by | Jan 18, 2021 | Firm News

estate planning

As individuals grow older, safeguarding their assets takes on greater importance. If the proper actions are not executed, these precious holdings might be lost or distributed by legal authorities like courts.

Fortunately, however, estate planning lawyers Las Vegas Albright Stoddard Warnick and Albright remind current and future clients that a process called estate planning might help circumvent these potentially detrimental circumstances.

Estate Planning Overview

A Las Vegas estate planning attorney stresses that this crucial process estate enables subjects to protect their assets, delineate where said ownings will go once they die, determine how their estate should be handled upon their passing, and bestow others the legal authority to manage their affairs should they become unable to do so.

Important Estate Planning Terms

Any estate planning lawyer Las Vegas would tell a client that estate planning is a significant undertaking involving several key processes. Moreover, there are numerous key terms associated with said effort that a participant should be aware of including


When many people hear the word estate, images of gated mansions with lush, manicured lawns are often conjured.
That said, in its simplest definition, an estate is the entirety of an individual’s financial holdings, such as their home, vehicles, financial accounts, and miscellaneous property. Additionally, and not to be forgotten, one’s debts are also part of their estate and must be paid off when said individual passes away.

Assets can be described as the property or financial holdings one possesses. Common examples, include houses, other real estate classifications, checking and savings accounts, investments like stocks and bonds, automobiles, and any other type of property having some monetary value.

Power Of Attorney

This legally-binding document, which is occasionally abbreviated as POA, permits the author to designate another person to render legal and financial decisions on their behalf should they be deemed physically or mentally incapacitated. A reputable Las Vegas estate planning lawyer will urge document signees to only designate an individual they implicitly trust.

Advanced Directives

These legal documents relate to one’s healthcare. One common example is a healthcare proxy, which enables the signee to delineate to another the right to make critical medical decisions on their behalf.


A professional estate planning lawyer in Las Vegas stresses that few estate planning actions are as important as the drafting and endorsing of a will.

This legal instrument, which is legally referred to as the last will and testament, dictates how a recently deceased subject’s final affairs are to be settled. Common issues discussed in said document include the distribution of their remaining assets, debt remittal, burial arrangements, and other personal requests.

Furthermore, a properly written will should nominate an executor. Said subject in an individual the deceased party wished to carry out the instructions contained within.

Individuals can place the entirety of their assets into a trust. Upon their death, an overseer known as a Trustee distributes said assets in accordance with the requester’s wishes.


Estate planning attorneys Las Vegas highlight this important legal procedure where courts review and authenticate a person’s will. Moreover, probate courts also appoint estate administrator’s to oversee the final affairs of those who died intestate, or without having authored a will.

Probate can be a long and contentious process. However, individuals might be able to ensure their assets avoid getting held up by designating beneficiaries on payable on death or transfer on death orders on banking and investment accounts.

A fiduciary is an individual charged with the responsibility of serving a client or loved one’s best interest. For example, a trustee is a fiduciary. Said individual is expected to always act in the best interests of the trust’s intended beneficiaries and never in their own.

Contacting Us

The estate planning process can be daunting and confusing. However, with the help of an experienced estate planning attorney in Las Vegas, the undertaking can be far more manageable.

Those needing assistance with this vital task are encouraged to consult with the professional, legal team of Albright Stoddard Warnick and Albright today. To learn more about us, please visit albrightstoddard.com.