Over my years of practice, I have been frequently surprised by how many folks here in Florida have passed away without setting up a will or a trust or any specific instructions for their estates. While it is certainly not required by law, a will or a trust can ensure that your estate property goes to whom you want it to, and if properly set up, can save the beneficiaries of your estate significant time and dollars by minimizing or even avoiding the probate process.
Otherwise, what happens to your estate after you pass on will be decided after a lengthy and costly probate court process by a set of Florida laws that are concrete and may well not be in line with your wishes.
Wills and trusts aren’t just for the rich. The goal of my office is to draft wills and trusts for regular folks at reasonable fees depending on the size of the estate. At my office, estate planning is achieved through a sit down meeting where client and attorney go over the client’s estate, and the attorney learns what is important to the client.
Armed with knowledge of the clients wishes, a will and/or trust is drafted which ensures, upon passing, that the client’s wishes for the distribution of his or her estate are complied with, and for as little cost to the estate as possible.
Additionally, in this age of computer advancement and technical medicine, estate and remainder of life planning has become very important. Florida residents and many across the nation will recall the news about years of court battles that took place in the tragic case of Schaivo v Schaivo, where the medical treatment to be provided to a severely injured young woman was litigated.
As a result of this case, many people have come to realize how important it is to make known their personal wishes in the event of such an extreme situation.
While undeniably every person is entitled to his or her own dignified choice in the event of severe injury, illness or incapacity, a valid Living Will and possible designation of a Health Care surrogate, or the drafting of a Durable Power of Attorney can legally state your wishes even though you may not be able to, and protect you in the event of severe illness, injury or incapacity.
Here, your wishes are determined during a face to face consultation, and the necessary documents specifically crafted in accordance with your instructions.