Wills Attorney in West Chester
Although many prefer to avoid the subject, we owe it to our loved ones to prepare a plan for after we’re gone. From our office in West Chester, a Wills Attorney can walk you through the process, making sure that all assets are secure and that your family is protected in the best way possible.
An important step in the estate planning process is the preparation of a will, and it often requires the assistance of an experienced attorney. Without a will, the state decides how to handle your estate. Pennsylvania laws of Intestate Succession are designed to protect a surviving spouse and children. This often means that some loved ones are left out or the estate is not distributed evenly. With a will, you can make sure that each of your loved ones receives your hard-earned assets.
We will help you create a last will and testament, which will begin instructing others of your wishes at the exact time of death. This legal document will list the designated executor of your estate, how to distribute assets, and name a legal guardian should you have any minor children. The executor of your estate will become responsible for collecting and distributing assets, as well as paying off the estate’s debts. The experienced lawyers at LUONGO BELLWOAR LLP can privately discuss the qualities to look for in an executor to help you make the right decision for your family.
A trust is a common tool used to help distribute property or assets to a loved one in your lifetime or after you have passed away. This written document outlines how, when, and where a gift or property is to be allotted to a beneficiary.
You may have decided to include a trust in your estate plan. A trust generally allows a third party (trustee) to hold assets on behalf of beneficiaries. Many options exist, and a trust can specify exactly how and when assets pass to beneficiaries. A trust may or may not be a valuable asset to your estate plan, but an attorney experienced with trusts can help you decide. From our West Chester office, we can guide you through the process and handle all of your concerns. There are many reasons to set up a trust, and you’ll need a professional to ensure you’re getting the protection you need for your assets.
Your beneficiaries can often gain access to assets from a trust more quickly than they would using a will. In addition, a trust may not always be considered part of the taxable estate, meaning fewer taxes will be due upon your death. The two basic types of trusts are living trusts and testamentary trusts.
A living trust allows your beneficiary to access your planned gift during your lifetime, while a testamentary trust is set up in your will and goes into effect at the time of death. There are two types of living trusts:
- Revocable: You retain control of all assets within your trust, and you have the right to revoke or alter the trust at any time.
- Irrevocable: The assets in this trust no longer belong to you and the terms cannot be altered without the beneficiary’s consent. However, funds in this type of trust are not subject to estate taxes.
Setting up wills and trusts are just some of the many important estate plan services we offer. An attorney at LUONGO BELLWOAR LLP will help to lay out your options and make sure you understand the financial results of every available option. In addition to setting up wills and trusts, our West Chester team can assist with
- Creating living wills
- Planning for retirement
- Planning for relatives’ educations
- Creating medical power of attorney
- Creating general power of attorney