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What are key planning concerns for some aging LGBTQ couples?

Legions of LGBTQ individuals across California and nationally have estate planning concerns that are no different from those on the minds of their “straight” friends, family members and acquaintances.

Planners everywhere and from every demographic typically want to preserve assets and ensure property distribution to selected heirs and loved ones. They want to lawfully avoid tax outlays when possible. They seek confidence garnered through careful selection of trusted parties to make key financial and health decisions for them in the event they become unable to do so themselves. Many planners focus on gifting, charitable bequests and establishing a meaningful legacy.

All those planning aspirations – which are routinely achievable for individuals and couples who secure on-point and proven help from an experienced estate planning attorney – comprise mainstream objectives in the estate administration realm.

That is centrally implied in a recent planning article in Forbes. That piece also makes an additional point, though, namely that LGBTQ individuals sometimes have additional and distinct planning concerns as they age. Where that is true, they can soundly and proactively address them by timely reaching out for assistance to a broadly experienced estate planning legal team.

The Forbes author spotlights these material findings culled by a national nonprofit LGBTQ advocacy group:

  • Elderly individuals from within the demographic are far less likely to have children than are heterosexual couples
  • Reportedly, fully half of older LGBTQ people report feelings of isolation or loneliness

Those findings can have planning implications. So too, notes Forbes, can “complex family dynamics” in situations where biological relatives “struggle with accepting a same-sex partner.” Moreover, elder financial abuse is a sad reality for the aging LGBTQ community, just as it is for people of every age-advancing demographic across the country.

Forbes stresses the threshold importance for same-sex couples to possess “accurate documentation which legitimizes their union.” Additionally, those couples and all other LGBTQ individuals should ensure that their planning entails close consideration and careful drafting of tailored legal instruments (e.g., a will, one or more trusts where applicable and financial and health care powers of attorney).

A long-experienced estate planning attorney who commands an integrated tax/accounting background and routinely works passionately on behalf of diverse and valued clients can provide further information.

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