Our practice specializes in counseling individuals and families in the preparation of comprehensive estate plans, and probate and trust administration. An estate plan can include Wills, Revocable and Irrevocable Trusts, Antenuptial agreements, Powers of Attorney, Health Care Directives, Medicaid planning, and related legal issues. This area of law is constantly evolving as state and federal laws and regulations change. It is important to update your estate plan as your circumstances and relationships change.
Trusts and Trust Administration:
A Trust can be revocable or irrevocable, an asset protection trust, a Special Needs Trust, a Medicaid Trust or a Charitable Trust. In most cases, you can set the terms of the distribution of trust assets after your death. We will advise you on and how to set up your trust to meet your estate planning goals and how to transfer assets to your trusts.
Wills and Probate Administration:
A Will serves to transfer assets held in your name alone, without named beneficiaries, to the beneficiaries you name in your Last Will and Testament. We assist in the probate administration of assets and also counsel on how to avoid probate through the use of “Will Substitutes”. A Will Substitute can be a transfer on death or payable on death designation on bank and investment accounts, beneficiary designations on retirement plans and insurance policies and Transfer on Death Designation Affidavits for your real property. Outdated and improper beneficiary designations can upset the best thought out estate plan.
Elder Law and Advance Directives:
As the population ages, Durable General Powers of Attorney and Advance Medical Directives, including Health Care Powers of Attorney, Living Wills and HIPAA waivers, become more important, although adults of any age should have these documents, as well. Planning for Medicaid can involve transferring assets to individuals or the preparation of Medicaid Asset Protection Trusts, and retitling assets, taking into consideration the everchanging Medicaid regulations.
Charitable remainder trusts can be constructed to provide an income stream to you or a family member while benefiting the charities of your choice. Establishing a Donor Advised Fund is another way to accomplish your charitable giving goals.