Estate planning may be simple or complex but always requires specialized training and professional judgment obtained only through years of experience and study. A practicing attorney can help you avoid the many pitfalls and advise you of the best course of action for your individual situation. At Gresham Law Firm, we take the time to meet with you to identify your individual needs and desires. We will advise you how to arrange your assets and prepare the appropriate documents to achieve your goals in the most efficient and effective manner. A simple estate plan includes a Will and/or Trust, proper beneficiary designations, Powers of Attorney, and a Medical Declaration.
Studies have shown that up to 73% of Americans do not have a will. A will is a legal document that describes how you would like your property and other assets to be distributed after your death and names a person to manage this distribution. If you have minor children, you will also nominate guardians for them in your will, assuring that they are cared for by adults that you have chosen. Your will is specific to you, your circumstances, and your desires. For those who have neglected to have a will prepared, the State of Colorado will determine how their assets are distributed when they die. If it is important to you to make these decisions for yourself, please reach out to us to schedule a consultation today.
There is a popular misconception today that “everyone needs a trust.” While this is not true, it is true that a trust is absolutely necessary in certain situations. Whether your circumstances require a Revocable Living Trust, a Special Needs Trust, or a trust for the benefit of your minor children, there are many regulations, IRS rules, etc., that must all be adhered to. One of the riskiest things you can do is attempt to create and fund a trust on your own. One of the best decisions you can make is to consult with our attorney who can assess your individual situation and advise you regarding your need for a trust, prepare solid documents, and guide you through the funding process.
Just as important as documents that control the distribution of your assets
after your death, Powers of Attorney allow you to choose people who will assist you in making medical decisions and manage your finances if you become incapacitated while you are living. Our office regularly receives phone calls from adult children whose parent has experienced a medical crisis, and they want to know how they can help. If that parent has executed a Power of Attorney, their agent has the authority to assist them. Without these documents in place, a court-ordered guardianship or conservatorship will likely be required.
A Living Will, also known as a medical declaration or advance medical directive, is an important part of your estate plan. It is a legal document which outlines your wishes regarding your care and decisions regarding life-sustaining procedures at the end of your life when you are no longer capable of expressing those wishes. Signing a Living Will clearly informs your medical team of your choices and prevents your loved ones from having to make these decisions during a difficult time. Should your situation require more complex planning due to tax concerns, long-term goals, asset protection, persons with disabilities, or other specific concerns, we are here to help. Our goals are to understand your situation and wishes and direct you toward the best plan based upon the totality of factors in your case. Spencer Gresham is an experienced attorney with a solid reputation and is capable of preparing your documents, regardless of their complexity, combining both your desires and his recommendations.
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