Estate Planning

Our firm represents clients in all types of estate planning matters, ranging from wills to the most complex irrevocable trusts, and in probate and conservatorship actions. We offer our clients an innovative and sophisticated estate planning practice. We draft revocable and irrevocable trusts, life insurance trusts, durable powers of attorney and split-interest charitable trusts. We prepare buy-sell agreements, partnership agreements, cross-purchase agreements, as well as estate arrangements for owners of closely held businesses.

Our approach to estate planning is to evaluate our clients' personal goals, their financial situations, and to develop customized plans for them based on their specific requirements. We utilize not only traditional estate planning vehicles, but also innovative techniques that integrate personal estate planning goals with a client’s business and financial affairs.


TRUST AND ESTATE SERVICES

  • Revocable Trusts
  • Powers of Attorney
  • Health Care Planning
  • Irrevocable Trusts
  • Healthcare Directives
  • Wills
  • Charitable Giving
  • Family Partnerships & LLC's
  • Premarital Agreements
  • Succession Planning

Frequently Asked Questions

What do we mean by Estate Planning?

Estate planning is the process of putting into place documents that address who handles your financial, legal and health matters in the event of your incapacity or death.

When do I need a Durable Power of Attorney?

Almost every adult can be protected by durable powers of attorney. A power of attorney is a designation of another person, or persons, to act in your behalf if you are mentally incapacitated, or otherwise need someone to act, say if you are out of the country for a closing on your home. “Durable” means the power of attorney endures the incapacity of the person. Health care powers of attorney are strictly for medical decisions. At any time, a person could need his or her appointed “attorney-in-fact” to act on his or her behalf, due to injuries from a car wreck, a stroke or heart attack, or the onset of dementia. If incapacity occurs and a person does not have powers of attorney, family or loved ones may have to seek a court-ordered guardianship to assist with financial and medical decisions.

What is a Revocable Trust?

A Revocable Trust is a will substitute, a method to set up your property while you are alive where persons or entities you name are authorized to handle your assets in the event of incapacity or death. These trusts, if properly funded, allow your assets to avoid probate.

When do I need a Will?

You need a Last Will and Testament if you own property in your own sole name at the time of your death, with no beneficiary named.

When is Probate required, and what is Probate?

Probate is required when a person dies with property in his or her own name, and either has a Will (testate), or has no Will (intestate probate). Probate is the legal process for administering a person’s estate after death, under the Probate Judge’s supervision, to address the debts of the decedent and pass his or her assets to his or her heirs.

What other methods exist to plan for my Incapacity or Death?

One may use beneficiary designations to pass property to responsible adults where appropriate, after careful consideration.

Why do I need a lawyer to help with my Estate Planning?

Your particular needs, and your estate, are unique to you. Our attorneys are skilled at listening to your goals, your hopes and worries, and in advising you of the options that exist. Advice and consideration of ramifications, practical and financial, are paramount. Once the needs, goals and assets of the client are considered, we arrive at a recommendation that we believe will best meet your needs.