Betsy Cannon

Estate Planning 101: Tips I learned from Betsy

PHOTO: Betsy Cannon speaks to a crowd of LightHouse supporters.

Last month Estate Attorney Betsy Cannon led a workshop for a group of interested LightHouse supporters and students on the basics of planning your estate.

Betsy Cannon is a partner in the firm of Plageman, Lund & Cannon LLP, where she practices in the areas of estate planning, and trust and estate administration. Her talk was informative and fascinating, and the audience was engaged, asking many pertinent questions. Here are some of the things we gleaned from the workshop:

  • Planning your estate is important. If you don’t have an estate plan, there are a number of undesirable things that will take place, the most glaringly avoidable, costly and unpleasant is that your estate will be subject to probate if your assets exceed $150,000. This will delay your assets being distributed and will give you no opportunity to make charitable gifts through your estate.
  • If your assets of real estate, currency, stocks, etc. total more than $150,000, it is generally recommended that your estate plan be in the form of a Revocable Living Trust, not a will. This will enable you to avoid probate and its costs. If you´re not looking to sell yet, you can hire lakeland fl property management companies to help you manage your own property with ease.
  • Don’t fall into a common estate planning pitfall: Once you set up a trust, you need to take the additional step of making sure all of your assets are transferred into the trust.
  • The takeaway: Another good reason to plan your estate: Having a written estate plan will make things much easier on your descendants. They won’t have to wonder about your intentions, your desires for your health care, or what assets you want passed down to whom. Why not make things simpler for your loved ones?
  • Charitable gifts through an estate plan can lower your tax burden and make a lasting difference for LightHouse for the Blind, helping us plan our growth, strategize for the future and make an impact on the community.

To learn more about estate planning or how your planned gift can benefit the LightHouse, please contact 415-694-7333 or

4 thoughts on “Estate Planning 101: Tips I learned from Betsy”

  1. I definitely think it’s important to have a will or a revocable living trust. You want to ensure that the wishes that you have are carried out. Great information, thanks for sharing!

  2. I am fairly young and have never thought about estate planning. I would hate to think my estate would be left in a mess if I were to pass away. Maybe my lawyer can help me get something set up. I would love to avoid a probate being placed on my assets.

  3. I like how you talked about the consequences of not having your estate planned out. Lately, I’ve been researching estate planning, and even though I don’t have any dependents, I’ve found that it’s still important for me to plan out my estate for after I pass. I’ve also been looking into attorneys for estate planning, and I think that is something I will have to invest in. Part of the reason is that I don’t have anyone to help me with the process, so I really could use some professional help. I hope by doing all this, I’ll feel much more secure in case something were to happen to me sooner than expected.

  4. In addition to having a written estate plan, I think it is good to talk to your family about the plan. It is the best way to be sure they understand all of your intentions. It is also a good way to make sure everyone is getting what they want from the estate.

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