Estate Planning, Elder Law, and Estate Litigation
Estate Planning and Litigation
The term “estate” is commonly used to mean the quantity, nature and extent of an interest that a person has in property. Property can be further divided into many categories but the two most common categories, are the real estate and the personal estate. In other words, the word “estate” is used to mean the property that a person holds.
“Estate Planning” has come to mean the method by which a person’s estate is preserved. Aspects of estate planning are estate administration, estate taxation, the preparation of documents which give instruction and direction to the distribution of an estate, and the advice and guidance that estate planners give to assist a person in the orderly and efficient transfer of assets.
One aspect of estate planning that is commonly known is the preparation of Wills, Trusts, Powers of Attorney, Advanced Medical Directives and Health Care Powers of Attorney. The estate planner should carefully examine the nature of the client’s estate, analyze the likely consequences of taxation, and assist the client in the orderly transfer of assets with maximum efficiency and minimum cost. The estate planner uses a variety of tools in this process, including Revocable Living Trusts, Wills, General Durable Powers of Attorney, Living Wills, Advanced Medical Directives, Health Care Powers of Attorney, and estate tax analysis.
We are thoroughly familiar with the statutory process by which assets are transferred. This includes estate administration, both intestate (without a will) and testate administration, operation and taxation of instruments executed during life such as Revocable Living Trusts and Irrevocable Trusts, and the processing of estates after death. It is not only important to prepare the proper instruments that assist the client in the efficient transfer of assets, but it is also important for the estate planner to be familiar with the actual management and operation of estates through the probate system and through the statutory process of intestate administration.
Estate planning involves an overall approach in which the estate planner assists the client in the important goal of transferring assets with a minimum of expense and a maximum of efficiency, while meeting the specific needs, interests, and goals of the client.
The firm has been involved in the area of Elder Law almost from the time that a separate field became known as Elder Law. The growing population of seniors in the country has required attorneys to pay particular attention to the needs of senior citizens. This includes areas traditionally associated with senior citizens, such as the preparation, review and interpretation of Wills, Powers of Attorney, Advance Medical Directives, Health Care Powers of Attorney, Guardianships and Committees.
Elder Law pays particular attention to traditional documents that are important to senior citizens, such as the preparation of wills and powers of attorney, but Elder Law also goes into other areas that are unique to senior citizens, such as planning for death, the transition of wealth from one person or family to another, the management of assets for senior citizens and planning for an orderly and cost efficient transfer of wealth at death.
Elder Law involves not only the preparation of wills and trusts but also the effective management of assets during life, which can include the preparation of revocable living trusts and pourover wills, the use of powers of attorney and health care directives, the review of the legal documents required to assist the senior citizen in the effective management of assets during life, and the transition of assets after death or upon disability.
The Elder Lawyer looks at a client's mental and physical health, the size and nature of assets, and immediate and long-term needs, and assists in the preparation of documents that meet the unique needs of the individual client with particular emphasis on independence and quality of life. The Elder Attorney also will be familiar with the different forms of assistance available to senior citizens, including Medicaid, Medicare, local agencies on aging, health care professionals, social services, and other support organizations that assist the senior citizen with reference to aging, transition of assets and independent living. The Elder Lawyer has the ability to petition local courts and departments of social services relating to matters involving senior citizens and persons under disability. We are familiar with the operation of the statutory processes available both in the area of state, federal and local law.
DISCLAIMER: THE OUTCOME OF ANY CASE WILL DEPEND UPON A VARIETY OF FACTORS UNIQUE TO EACH CASE. CASE RESULTS REPRESENTED HEREIN DO NOT GUARANTEE OR PREDICT A SIMILAR RESULT IN ANY FUTURE CASE UNDERTAKEN BY THE LAWYER.