Wills & Estates

Wills & Estates

Planning for your future and the future of your loved ones can be of great benefit. Obtaining assistance from an attorney will ensure that your estate is distributed to the people you choose while paying a minimum of taxes and administration expenses. Attorney Cicala can assist you in completing your estate plan cost effectively and wisely.

Do I need a Will? Most people should have a will. You may also benefit from other forms of planning, such as having a revocable trust, power of attorney or living will. You can only properly decide this after consulting with an attorney who can provide you with advice on these matters.

Power of Attorney and Living Wills. A power of attorney is a legal document in which a person appoints another to act in his or her place with respect to his or her financial affairs. The power to act may be limited to specific matters or circumstances or may be so general that the agent may take any action that the principal could take without a court's intervention.

In estate planning, powers of attorney are most often used to appoint an agent to act when a person becomes disabled and unable to make decisions on his/her own behalf. Without this, it may be impossible to manage your assets if you become disabled.

A living will is a specialized medical power of attorney that is needed to appoint someone to make medical decisions on your own behalf if you become unable to make medical decisions for yourself.

You may simply choose to appoint an agent or you may also provide directions to that agent as to how he or she should act. The term "living will" is often associated with decisions to remove life support systems from terminally ill patients. However, they may also be used to allow the agent to make medical decisions on your behalf which do not involve life and death.

Living Wills can help assure that our intentions are carried out. This can make it much easier on your survivors both emotionally and financially.

Considerations with Children. If you have children, your estate plan can address some of your concerns for them after your death:

  • Who will take care of the children?
  • How will daily and educational expenses for the children be met?
  • At what age should my children receive the property outright?

Your will should name a guardian to act in your place for your children while they are under the age of 18. You may also decide to establish a trust for your children to provide for the administration of property for their benefit after your death.

For a free estate planning consultation, contact Joseph Cicala today!