Wills and Trusts
The firm prepares a number of estate planning documents, including Last Will & Testaments, Wills containing Trusts, Revocable and Irrevocable Trusts, General Powers of Attorney, Medical Powers of Attorney, and Living Wills (also known as Advanced Directives.) A proper estate plan establishes the mechanisms and procedures for managing and disposing of one's assets during life and after death, and use of an attorney can help to ensure that your property benefits those who matter most to you while minimizing or deferring the impact of state and federal taxes.
A simple power of attorney avoids the need for a Guardianship proceeding should someone become disabled or be otherwise unable to handle their own affairs. Guardianship proceedings to gain the authority to act as a Guardian are necessary any time anyone over the age of 18 years of age is unable to make financial or medical decisions on their own. The age or the value of the assets of a disabled person do not matter, the authority to handle matters for another is the same; regardless of whether they have $500.00 or $5 million dollars. You may never use a power of attorney but everyone over the age of 18 should have these documents in place, you will save time, money and anguish for your family.
It is important to plan ahead and decide who will handle your affairs in the event of your illness or demise. You are doing your family a tremendous favor by getting your estate plans in order, doing so eliminates misunderstandings among your survivors, disagreements over health care matters, organ donation, burial versus cremation….many things that are never discussed until it is too late.
There are frequent changes in this area of law. Keep in mind that existing estate planning documents should be periodically reviewed, particularly whenever there is a significant change in your circumstances (i.e. marriage, divorce, birth of a child, inheritance, etc.).