Wills & Estate Planning
Plan in Advance by Covering Your Bases.
Wills and Estate Planning is not just for the elderly. Individuals and families need to document their wishes and properly plan their estates at various points in their lives. For instance, a young couple with children will look at their estate plan from a very different perspective than those much later in life. Both, however, require proper planning to ensure that their families and loved ones are cared for in the best way possible.
Find Your Peace of Mind.
Wills should be prepared by lawyers to ensure they are done properly . Wills are often written to provide peace of mind. The way that this carries into estate planning will depend on the particular circumstances of the persons making their will. Usually parents of young children seek to provide appropriate guardians and make financial provisions for their children in the event of the unthinkable. Individuals or couples later in life typically seek to set up their estate plan in such a way that the relationships within their family will be preserved beyond their own passing. Careful thought and planning is imperative to prevent simple errors that can stop plans from taking effect. Hiring a lawyer to document wishes is a simple and effective way of creating confidence in this important stage in estate planning.
Power of Attorney
Make Your Own Choices with Support, When You Need It.
Executing a Power of Attorney eases the burden on loved ones responsible for looking after the financial and property affairs of those who are unable to take care of such matters themselves. Without a Power of Attorney, those caring for others who lose that ability may find that they must make a court application to receive authority to make such decisions. This type of application costs estates money and places an additional burden on those closest to the individuals who require help. Often, this is time, money, and energy that could be better spent on the individuals' actual care. The time to name an attorney is while the people granting Power of Attorney are well, in advance of any accident or illness that could threaten the ability to make decisions regarding finances and property. Once a Power of Attorney is in place, one is still able to make all of their own decisions as long as they are capable. They simply have another person, with their complete trust, who can do the same on their behalf.
Advance Care Plan
Help Loved Ones Understand Your Wishes.
Advance Care Plans, also known as Living Wills or Health Care Directives, provide direction regarding thoughts and wishes in respect to health care decisions. They can be in the form of statements that convey thoughts in relation to medical issues, they can name a person to make decisions on behalf of another, or both.
Many people mistakenly believe that a Power of Attorney allows their attorney to make medical decisions for them, but that is not the case. The document in which proxies for health care decisions are named is separate from a Power of Attorney document. In this separate document, the persons naming proxies may also provide direction as to their wishes regarding life support, medical intervention, and other healthcare issues.
This document serves a double purpose in the event that a time comes when individuals cannot make or communicate their own healthcare decisions. First, it ensures that wishes are followed. Second, it provides the people chosen to act as proxies with a sense of comfort in knowing their sick friend or family member's wishes as well as confirmation that their loved one had confidence in them, as the person they chose to act on their behalf. These reassurances can remove one level of difficulty in an already overwhelming time.
Get Organized to Administer with Excellence.
Obtaining Letters Probate or Letters of Administration involves a great deal of organization. There are several steps involved in obtaining Letters Probate or Letters of Administration that can be navigated most efficiently by those familiar with the process. Engaging the services of a lawyer who regularly prepares these court applications can be a great source of comfort and relief because it creates confidence in the course of action and it enables the executors or administrators to focus on the estate work requiring their personal involvement.