Smart Estate Planning: Designing Your Legacy
While most people think of term “estate planning” as simply making a will and signing a few other documents, we see it as something much broader and more meaningful. Estate planning is a way to ensure that your assets are used for the people you love and the causes you care about, both during your life and after your death. Our estate planning services encompass a comprehensive review of your finances, insurance, and legal documents, as well as a discussion of other actions that may be necessary to provide for yourself and your loved ones.
We counsel our estate planning clients with respect to the following issues:
- Providing for Yourself (and Your Spouse). You have enough financial assets to provide for yourself throughout retirement and in the event of incapacity. Depending on your age, this may include a review of your retirement accounts and other financial assets, disability insurance, and long-term care insurance.
- Guardianship Plans for Minor Children. If you have young children, we make sure they will be taken care of in the event you are unable to take care of them yourself.
- Ensuring Your Care in the Event of Incapacity. We counsel you on the documents and actions necessary to ensure you are treated in accordance with your wishes in the event you become incapacitated. This may include a power of attorney for finances, a power of attorney for healthcare decisions, and a living will. However, documents alone seldom suffice to fully address this contingency. We will advise you with respect to the serious conversations you will need to have with your designated agents.
- Protecting Your Family’s Inheritance. You want your assets to be left to those who are most important to you – not their former spouses or creditors. We counsel you on ways to protect your assets so that they don’t end up in the wrong hands.
- Giving to Your Favorite Causes. If you give regularly to a certain charitable cause, you may want to ensure that funds continue to be available to those organizations even if you are not able to make the contributions yourself. We help clients to design charitable giving strategies to support their favorite causes and minimize their taxes. We can also help you determine whether large gifts are best made as lifetime gifts or as bequests, depending on your individual circumstances.
- Minimizing Taxes. Whether saving for retirement, giving to charities, or leaving money to our loved ones, we all want to minimize our taxes. We counsel clients on various strategies for saving taxes, including federal and state income taxes, state and federal estate taxes, and state inheritance taxes.
Through our comprehensive approaching estate planning, we make sure you have the peace of mind of knowing that you and your loved ones will be taken care of, even in the face of unexpected events. By assessing your financial situation, identifying your goals, and addressing your most important concerns, we will help you design a sound plan for your lifetime and a lasting legacy that reflects your values and priorities.
When possible, we work on a flat fee basis, so that you’ll know up front how much a service will cost. We want to make sure you’re comfortable taking the time necessary to discuss important and sensitive family issues. We’ve found that clients are far more likely to open up and share important information when they’re not constantly watching the clock. When you feel comfortable providing sensitive family and financial information, we can provide a more complete and effective plan for you and your loved ones.
Smart Business Planning: Providing Business Owners with Quality, Affordable Legal Advice
We serve as a business owner’s trusted advisor, helping your business thrive by guiding you through the tax and legal aspects of important business decisions. We work to minimize your taxes, protect you and your business from liability, and give you the peace of mind that comes with knowing your business is operating within the law.
We pride ourselves on responding to each client in a complete and timely manner, and we’ll work with you to keep your legal costs to a minimum. When possible, we charge a flat fee, so that you’ll know in advance how much a particular service will cost. If you are a regular client, we won’t charge for brief telephone calls.
A defining aspect of our practice is making sure that you’re comfortable asking questions when something needs to be clarified or when an issue arises that implicates a legal or tax issue. It’s often far easier (and cheaper!) to address a problem early on than to wait until someone brings a lawsuit or the IRS conducts an audit. We find that clients are more likely to bring these issues to our attention in a timely manner if they’re not worried about getting a bill for every minute they spend on the phone with us.
Some issues, such as intellectual property protection, may require legal advice beyond our practice areas. In that event, we will assist you in finding trustworthy, affordable counsel with the required expertise.
Your success is our success. By counseling you on the most effective, efficient, and legally-sound ways to structure transactions and run your business, you can work toward your goals with added confidence and improved results.