Firm Overview

Facing the Present and the Future

Thinking and planning about what happens at life's end is not exactly at the top of everyone's “to do” list. Yet it needs to be done, and the sooner the better. A Solid Estate Plan Is Necessary Regardless of the Size of Your Estate.

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Should you die without the proper planning, it is your family that will bear the consequences. And the issue is not just protecting your assets from the tax collector, it is directing them to the right persons in the right way. Dying without a will (intestacy) and/or dying without an estate plan can lead to a distribution of your estate very different from what you had in mind, and frequently is the cause of family battles. For instance, remember that there are certain beneficiaries who can ONLY be remembered through a will. The intestacy laws make no provision for distributing assets to a friend or a charity. If the law says that because you did not leave a will, your estate will pass to a second cousin you have not seen in 20 years, that is exactly where it will go. And your best friend, or the charity you supported faithfully during your life, is left out. A large part of my job is alerting you to the alternatives. Where will your property wind up if you have no will? Is that what you want? Do you want estate distributed to your beneficiaries outright, or would it be better (for them and you) if they were held in trust?

And at death, the estate administration process needs to carry out what you want. While probate is not necessarily complex, I have had many years of experience in avoiding the potential problems that can occasionally crop up.

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