Here are my goals for our work together:
Your experience will be pleasant because your wishes will be respected, your concerns will be listened to, I will structure the whole experience so that you can think through the important issues and get well-informed answers to all of your questions, promptly and without making you feel insecure or misinformed, or over-charged.
Your experience will be convenient because I offer Flat Fee pricing, in-house notarization of your documents, and will work with you to review draft documents in person or by Zoom, whatever works best for you.
Your experience will be efficient because I provide you with all of the tools you'll need to educate yourself about the estate planning on this website, I provide you with a questionnaire to gather all of the essential information that I'll need during our first meeting (and after), and I have streamlined and organized the drafting, review, and execution stage of the process to make it simple for you. When you are done, you'll leave with a signed original of each document and a thumbdrive with pdf's of all of your executed documents for digital storage.
For trust administration and probates I have a full-time paralegal who will work with you to manage the accounting and reporting necessary for Trustees and Executors.What’s in an Estate Plan?
For most people, an estate plan consists of four main documents: a Trust, a Will, a Durable Power of Attorney for Finance, and an Advance Health Care Directive. When we work together, we’ll figure out which ones you need and how to structure each to accomplish your goals.
Here’s a short description of each one. To read more, download the Getting Started Packet here.
Wills are the simplest estate planning tools. They are extremely flexible and provide for appointment of guardians, tax savings trusts, and trusts for children. They do not substantially reduce the costs of wealth transfer (i.e. probate).
Living Trusts are legal entities that hold property during a person’s life and provide for a distribution plan after death. All assets in the living trust avoid probate. Living trusts are coordinated with pour-over Wills to appoint guardians (if necessary) and tie up loose ends.
Powers of attorney allow someone to make decisions and to manage your financial affairs for assets outside of a living trust if you become incompetent.
Advance Health Care Directives allow you to name an agent to make health care decisions for you and state your wishes for end-of-life care.What Happens in a Trust Administration or Probate Proceeding?
In trust administration and probate proceedings, the main steps are the same, although how those steps are completed differs:
- You must identify all of the decedent’s assets.
- You must get all of those assets appraised.
- You must notify all heirs and beneficiaries.
- You must pay all taxes and creditors.
- You must distribute the assets as directed by the Trust or Will.
- You must keep excellent records.
- You must be fair to all beneficiaries and avoid any self-dealing.
If you are ready to get started, please do the following:
- Download the Getting Started Packet here.
- Call 650/428-3900 or 650/237-7218 to make an appointment.
- Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.