Estate Planning

Why Plan Your Estate?

No one likes to dwell on the prospect of his or her own death. But if you postpone estate planning until it is too late, you run the risk of dying “intestate” (without a Will) which means that state law will determine who receives your estate. Your intended beneficiaries—those you love the most—may not receive what you would want them to receive.

This is why estate planning is so important, no matter how small your estate may be. It allows you, while you are well and alive, to ensure that your property will go to the people you want, in the way you want, and when you want. It permits you to save as much as possible on taxes, probate costs, and attorneys’ fees, and it affords the comfort that your loved ones can mourn without being simultaneously burdened with unnecessary red tape and financial confusion.

All estate plans should include, at a minimum, two important estate planning instruments: a durable power of attorney and a Will. The first is for managing your property during your life, in case you are ever unable to do so yourself. The second is for the management and distribution of your property after your death. In addition, any complete estate plan should include a durable power of attorney for health care and a living will.

The services we provide include: 


Whatever your needs, we can help. We will work with you to:

  • Determine how simple or complex a Will you need based on your personal situation.
  • Update an existing Will to reflect your current circumstances.
  • Make sure your Will is integrated with a Medicaid asset protection plan to ensure your estate is not at risk if you die while your spouse is receiving Medicaid for long-term care and is not subject to Medicaid estate recovery.


A trust is a legal arrangement through which one person, called a “trustee,” holds legal title to property for the benefit of another person, called a “beneficiary.” The rules or instructions under which the trustee operates are set out in the trust document. Trusts can be created within a Will or as a free-standing entity in order to accomplish a number of objectives, such as:

  • To transfer the ownership of property while maintaining a measure of control over the property
  • Tax savings
  • Protection for a disabled loved one
  • To avoid guardianship proceedings
  • Protection from creditors
  • Protection from the costs of nursing home care

Special or Supplemental Needs Trusts 

The purpose of a special or supplemental needs trust is to enable the donor to provide for the continuing care of a disabled spouse, child, relative, or friend. The beneficiary of a well-drafted special or supplemental needs trust will have access to the trust assets for purposes other than needs provided for by public benefits programs. In this way, the beneficiary will not lose eligibility for benefits such as Supplemental Security Income and Medicaid. A special or supplemental needs trust can be created by the donor during life or as part of a Will.

For whatever reason you might need a trust, we can help. We can work with you to:

  • Determine when a trust is needed and appropriate
  • Update an existing trust to reflect your current circumstances and changes in the law
  • Integrate your trust with other important estate planning tools such as Wills and powers of attorney
  • Integrate your trust into a Medicaid asset protection plan

Durable Powers of Attorney 

We will work with you to:

  • Determine the scope of your power of attorney
  • Identify the criteria for selecting the right person as agent under your power of attorney
  • Select the type of power of attorney that’s right for you
  • Integrate your power of attorney with other important estate planning tools such as Wills and trusts
  • Integrate your power of attorney into a Medicaid asset protection plan

Call (610) 446-9626 or contact us here to schedule a consultation.