Thinking about and planning for the future and emergencies can be stressful and uncomfortable. You are asked to make many important decisions that will affect your family and other loved ones. You may need to make decisions that you know will hurt some family members but that are in keeping with your own beliefs and principles. But, no matter how hard it is to make these decisions, it is far better for you to do so now than to leave those decisions to your loved ones to make during a time of grief and emotional stress
A compassionate and patient attorney can help you through the process. I understand these decisions are difficult but can help you by answering your questions, listening to your thoughts and concerns, and explaining the legal ramifications of the different options. In addition to sound legal advice, you are encouraged to talk to your loved ones during the estate planning process to the extent you feel comfortable and secure doing so. These decisions are very personal and ultimately yours to make, but you do not have to make them alone.
Estate planning is more than a will. It also allows you to, among other things, direct who you would like to make financial and medical decisions for you in the event of an emergency or your incapacitation, declare your wishes as to life-support measures, and direct the disposition of your last remains.
Even if you are married or in a civil union, there are still many reasons to complete your estate planning, including, for instance – nominating a guardian and trustee for your children, nominating a secondary fiduciary or agent to act on your behalf in case your spouse or partner is also incapacitated or unable to serve, indicating what is to happen to your estate when the second spouse or partner passes away, and planned giving to charities.
Attorney in Denver area for Non-Traditional Families (e.g. LGBT Families, Blended Families)
Colorado families are diverse, and becoming more and more so with time – LGBT or same-sex couples with or without children; blended families with both partners or spouses having children from previous relationships and/or a combination of joint and previous children; unmarried couples with children; children with one biological legal parent but with two equally devoted parents.
These families need an attorney that understands how the law affects them and their children and other descendants. I can help. Call me at (303)-832-2599 for a consultation to discuss what your family needs.
Wills and Trusts Attorney in Denver, Colorado
A will is a document in which you direct who is to receive your property when you pass away. Many people think they don’t have an “estate,” but, actually, almost everyone has an estate to some extent. An estate is everything you own or have an interest in at the time of your death. It includes, but is not limited to, real property, personal property, bank accounts, retirement accounts, life insurance, and vehicles. If you want to direct who receives your property, whatever that may be, then you need a will. A will also allows you to designate who is to handle your affairs upon your death, the person who is to collect and distribute your property.
A trust can be created during your lifetime or upon your death. In simple terms, a trust holds property for the benefit of a designated person or persons. Most trusts also indicate who is to benefit from the property held in trust upon the primary beneficiary’s death. If created and managed property, a trust can also help avoid probate.
If you need help with a will and/or trust, call me at (303)-832-2599.
Lawyer in Denver, Colorado for Financial/Property and Medical Powers of Attorney
Powers of Attorney are essential elements to a comprehensive estate plan. They allow you to designate who is to handle your property and finances and to make health care decisions for you should you be unable to handle those affairs for yourself. Even if you are married or in a civil union, you should have Powers of Attorney in place. You will likely want to name your spouse or partner as your primary agent, but these documents allow you to name a successor agent in the event your spouse or partner is also incapacitated or unavailable for some reason.
Living Wills (Medical Directives) Attorney in Denver, Colorado
Medical Directives, commonly referred to as Living Wills, allow you to direct the use or disuse of life support procedures and artificial nourishment in certain situations. These are important and very personal decisions. Many clients feel a great sense of peace knowing they have put their wishes in writing and have relieved their family of having to make such difficult decisions while under emotional strain.
Denver, Colorado Lawyer for Prenuptial Agreements, Domestic Partnership Agreements
Getting married or already married? Have children from a previous relationship? Then you should seriously consider a prenuptial agreement.
Today’s diverse and blended families make marital agreements an essential tool in making sure a client’s wishes are effectuated. Many people getting married have children from previous relationships and want to pass their property, or a portion of it, to those children, instead of to the new spouse. But, the probate code includes protections for spouses, enabling the new spouse to make a claim against the estate, even if the deceased spouse’s will indicates the children are to inherit the property. A prenuptial or post-nuptial agreement can prevent this and ensure you have the right to distribute your property as you wish.
For non-married couples, we can use a domestic partnership agreement. These agreements are similar to marital agreements and can provide certain rights and obligations.