Practice Areas

Estate Planning

Estate Planning is the process of planning for what will happen your property and assets when you die. Proper planning can reduce taxes, avoid probate, and clarify what will happen to assets like your home, bank accounts, automobiles, IRAs, life insurance, etc. Having the proper plan in place makes it clear who the beneficiaries are and who will be designated as guardians and executors of that “estate”. Without proper planning, the distribution of the estate will be determined by the courts, which can be a lengthy and painful process, creating friction between family members, during an already difficult time.

WILLS

A Will is the probate vehicle for communicating a person’s desires when they die, specifically detailing what will happen to all assets and liabilities upon death.  Having an attorney draft your Will can avoid complications for family members and your estate when you are gone. An unclear or improperly drawn Will can cause an estate to languish in the courts for months-or years-causing pain, frustration and expenses for your heirs.

TRUSTS

There are many different types of trusts for different needs. These documents avoid Probate and allow for more privacy. It is also a vehicle that allows for more control over how your assets can be used after you are gone.

DURABLE POWER OF ATTORNEY

A Durable Power of Attorney is the vehicle for financial decisions. It is a legal document that appoints someone as an Agent making your financial decisions when you cannot. By having this document you avoid a Guardianship of Property if you become incapacitated. You can also control exactly what your agent can, and cannot do, down to very specific actions.  Finally, it can save loved ones and family from confusion and frustration about what to do if you become incapacitated.

HEALTH CARE SURROGATE

A Health Care Surrogacy is your medical power which allows your chosen Agent to make your medical decisions when you cannot. This document also contains your Living Will and the HIPPA Privacy Act language.

BUSINESS SUCCESSION PLANNING

Provide for the transfer of your business at your retirement, disability, or death.

SPECIAL NEEDS PLANNING

People with disabilities need resources and extra protections. Special Needs Planning can give families the tools to protect their loved ones.

Estate Administration

PROBATE

Probate is the initial step of the legal process of administering an estate, resolving claims and distributing a person’s property under a will.  The probate court decides the legal validity of a person’s will and grants it’s approval to the executor and officially appoints the personal representative as having legal power to dispose of the assests in the manner specified in the will.

TRUST ADMINISTRATION

Often parents set up a Trusts in order to have privacy and flexibility. When the parents pass on, we can assist the Trustee throughout the process of Trust Administration. We make sure that everything is done according to the law and all of the beneficiaries receive what was left to them.

Elder Law

Families can make decisions to protect assets through different strategies.

VA BENEFITS

Our Veterans and their Spouses have resources available to them for their everyday living needs.

MEDICAID PLANNING

There are times in life when tough decisions must be made for loved ones who can no longer live alone.  Our office can assist you with preparing to be Medicaid ready immediately.

GUARDIANSHIP

Sometimes life happens and a family is not prepared for an event. A loved one is left vulnerable personally and financially. When the proper Powers of Attorney or Health Care Surrogacies are not in place, a family member will need to be placed under a Guardianship. We can assist you with establishing a Guardianship, and then meeting the Court requirements annually.

ASSET PROTECTION

As families grow their wealth, they need to look at the best options to protect that wealth. Our office can layout effective asset protection giving families long-term protection no matter what the circumstances. We will ask the right questions, and give families a clear path to peace of mind.