Decatur Estate Planning Lawyer
What we will do for you
Wills, Estates and Probate can be a confusing area of the law. There is much in the way of legal terminology that one should understand. While there are many office supply stores offering sample documents such as wills, “filling in the blanks” can be very dangerous. Laws vary from state to state and one simply must understand what he or she is doing and the significance thereof.
If you call and make an appointment to discuss what you would like to accomplish, we will sit down with you and explain what we would recommend, why and how much we would charge for our services. We do not charge for this initial consultation.
Below is an explanation of some basic terms. The terminology in the will and estates area can be confusing. The following are some basic definitions that might be helpful:
Will – document by which one’s assets are transferred after one’s death; assets to be transferred by a will do not include life insurance where there is a designated beneficiary, retirement benefits where there is a designated beneficiary, assets held in joint tenancy or certificates of deposit payable on death to another.
Living Will – document declaring your intention regarding use of life-support systems and heroic measures to keep you alive.
Living Trust – document you sign during your lifetime creating a separate legal entity to hold assets during your lifetime and also after your death if you so chose.
Testamentary Trust – a trust created in your will to hold assets after you die; it is often used to hold assets until beneficiaries are old enough to take care of the assets themselves.
Power of Attorney – document signed while one is of sound mind which allows another to take care of his or her financial affairs or to make health care decisions during one’s lifetime; It has no validity after one’s death but is valid even if one becomes incompetent after signing.