Every person over the age of 18 should have an updated Will, a Health Care Directive (“Living Will”) and a financial Power of Attorney. Paul Wigg-MaxwellI drafts these basic documents efficiently and at a reasonable price. In the process, Paul Wigg-MaxwellI consults with his clients and provides other basic legal “check-up” services to make sure the clients are legally healthy and that the Wills and other documents will achieve the results the client wants.
A Will is the document that you use to name guardians for your minor children in the event neither parent is available. This is a prime motivator for many people to have a Will prepared, but there are other family issues that can be addressed in a Will. Paul Wigg-Maxwell tailors your Will to address your personal situation.
Many have issues concerning the other parent of their children that they would like to address in the Will. Trusts can be drafted to leave control of any assets or life insurance proceeds for the benefit of the children, with a blood relative or friend in charge of the administration of those funds instead of the other parent. Although a biological parent has a presumption of parental rights in the event of your death, expressing a preference for guardian of the children and any concerns about the best interest of the children can be done in the Will.
Over our lifetimes, many of us marry more than once. Some of us never marry. Our families may include our biological children and relatives and/or those who we have emotional ties to through marriage or other connections. An estate plan may be as complicated as a divorce, or even more so. Which assets are mine and which are my partner’s? Which children are “my” children and do I owe more at my death to my partner or to my children? What am I responsible for? How can I best handle those responsibilities? What do I want to happen after I am gone? These are just some of the questions that come up frequently in practice.
Elder Law Concerns
Possible concerns or questions may include: My assets may be needed for a nursing home stay for my spouse or myself. How will that affect my estate plans? Is long term care insurance available to help with that cost? Can I afford it? I may need to borrow against the equity in my home. What is the best way to do that? Can I combine life insurance and long term care insurance? Can I count on the government and Medicaid to take care of me. If I rely on Medicaid will by spouse be penniless? My children? Is there anything that can be done to improve my situation?
Some issues or concerns may be: I have a business that should stay in the family. Some of my children have been involved in the business, but others have taken different paths. What is the best way to preserve this asset for the future? How can it be shared fairly?
Some issues may include: My children have medical issues that may worsen as they get older. They are getting SSI or other government subsidy, can I leave them any assets without reducing their government aid. My children have had issues with drugs, alcohol, gambling or other addictions, how should I deal with these issues in my estate planning? I am concerned that my child has married a “black sheep”, what happens if he or she goes bankrupt, or goes to prison or otherwise preys on my child, what can I do to protect his or her inheritance?
If you have any of these concerns or other questions, Paul Wigg-Maxwell is here to share the experience, ideas, and solutions of others who have faced these same issues.