ESTATE PLANNING

 

Estate planning is the process of appointing persons who will have authority to act as your agent in the event that you are incapable and how your property will be distributed after death. Proper estate planning with legal counsel is essential to ensuring your wishes are fulfilled and your loved ones are not faced with hard decisions in a time of loss.

For a complete estate planning package, our firm advises all clients to complete a Last Will and Testament, Power of Attorney, Medical Power of Attorney, and a Directive to Physicians.

My Last Will and Testament

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS – ESTATE PLANNING

A will is beneficial for everyone. Texas law provides a procedure for deciding how your property will be distributed. A will allows for you to decide how you want your property distributed. This is especially important if you are a part of a blended family and want to leave property to stepchildren or close friends.
No, your property will not pass automatically to your spouse and/or children. You must take action. An Affidavit of Heirship or a Probate proceeding will allow you to receive the property of the deceased.
A general power of attorney is a legal document that allows you to designate a person as your agent. Your agent is authorized to sign documents concerning your affairs, for you. A durable power of attorney allows for your agent to continue to act for you, even in the event you become incapacitated.
A medical power of attorney is a specific power of attorney that allows your designated agent to speak with your doctor concerning your health matters and make healthcare decisions.
A physician's directive is a legal document which allows your designated agent to make decisions concerning your medical care, specifically when you are not able to communicate to your doctor your wishes of whether you would like to be maintained or kept alive by artificial means.
-Intake Worksheet: Will (Download here), Power of Attorney (Download here), Medical Power of Attorney (Download here) -Any existing will or power of attorney
When you employ our law firm to complete your estate planning, the following services are included in out flat fee rate: ● Initial Consultation to discuss your wishes. ● Review of your property ownership and analysis of Texas succession law ● Creation of estate planning documents in accordance to Texas law for validity ● Review and full explanation of each provision of your estate planning documents ● Notary services and the availability of witnesses for execution
Our firm fulfills simple estate planning for flat fee rates per each document. If your estate planning needs are more complex - i.e. multiple gifts to multiple beneficiaries, creation of trust language - our firm will bill a base fee plus an hourly rate.
We advise all clients to speak with your banking institution and your tax consultant regarding your estate plan. Bank accounts, life insurance, and other benefits often pass outside of the estate by allowing you to name a beneficiary. If you have named a beneficiary for your assets, the estate plan created with this office does not control that asset.
Life is all about change. We advise our clients to review their estate plan at least every five years. Our firm is here to help when modifications need to be made.
Our law firm does NOT keep copies of your estate planning documents. These documents are your responsibility. Please be sure to keep your documents in a safe place. We do not advise making copies of your estate plan documents.
The Bexar County courthouse no longer allows the filing of Wills. Again, it is your responsibility to keep your estate plan documents safe. The courthouse does, however provide safekeeping for Wills for a small fee. If you are interested in safekeeping for your Last Will and Testament, you can contact the Bexar County Courthouse.