Our estate planning services are based on an underlying goal:
To design estate plans for clients that are truly responsive to their needs and intentions, both from a personal and tax perspective, and to implement these plans with documents and related services that are of the highest quality, completed in a timely manner, and done for a reasonable fee.
Usually the estate planning process is started by the client completing a confidential Questionnaire. A sample can be downloaded from the Questionnaire page. (There are separate forms for married couples and single persons.)
To help you better understand the issues that any good estate plan should address, please look at our Article on Estate Planning.
Once your estate plan is completed, it is important that you have a practical and effective way of informing your agents, executors, and caregivers of the details of both your financial situation and health-care preferences should they later need to step in to help you.
MAKE SURE YOUR FAMILY WILL KNOW YOUR WISHES IN THE EVENT OF YOUR INCAPACITY OR DEATH
For example, your health care agents should be able to quickly find out who your doctors and other health care providers are, as well as what medicines you are currently taking.
Your agents named to manage your property and finances should be able to quickly ascertain what assets you own and what your debts and on-going expenses may be.
In the event of your death, your wishes regarding your funeral and burial should be made known without delay to those you have authorized to make those arrangements.
It will be critical for all of these persons to know where your important papers are located, since they may be asked to produce them before they will be authorized to help you.
Getting this information to your helpers will be especially important if you do not have a spouse or any adult children living close by. In that case, the persons you have chosen will likely have no idea where this information and documents may be located, and you may be harmed as a result.
At the same time, you will want to retain strict privacy and confidentiality, so that this information will be disclosed only if and when necessary, and only to the persons you have authorized to see it.
As a courtesy, we have prepared a booklet titled Information My Family Should Know that is designed to accomplish these goals. We encourage you to use it for your own planning purposes.
You can also give a blank copy of the booklet to your parents or older relatives and have them complete it as part of their own estate planning process.