Estate Planning & Administration
Indianapolis Estate Planning Lawyers for Wills and Trusts in Marion and Contiguous Counties, and Throughout the State of Indiana
Comprehensive Estate Planning Is More than a Will
Comprehensive estate planning consists of the documents that provide for distribution of property after death (such as wills and trusts), advance directives which provide for healthcare decisions and powers of attorney in the event of incapacitation, and sometimes a revocable or irrevocable trust to hold property during a person’s or couple’s lifetime. Together, these documents serve to protect individuals and their families.
We serve clients by learning about their circumstances and wishes for asset distribution and for decision-making if they become incapacitated and are unable to convey their wishes. We help clients preserve assets for beneficiaries, minimize potential fighting concerning estate administration and asset division, and protect their families from having to make difficult medical decision concerning care if they become incapacitated.
Once we understand your concerns and desires for these matters, we can develop an effective and comprehensive estate plan for you.
As discussed in our website, it is important to understand that without a comprehensive estate plan, significant legal fees may be required later if certain events arise, your wishes may not be respected concerning medical care and asset distribution, and your loved ones may end up in litigation in the course of estate administration. We can help minimize the possibility of these issues occurring.
Indiana Estate Planning Documents
The fundamental Estate Planning Documents consist of:
- General durable power of attorney. This document enables you to appoint an agent to manage your health care and financial decisions, as well as conduct other business if you become incapacitated. All adults should have a durable power of attorney. Without a durable power of attorney, court action and unnecessary legal expenses may be required in the event of incapacitation.
- A Will. As noted above, property held by you at death and not subject to other contractual arrangements is transferred by will. All adults should have a will; otherwise, Indiana intestate statutes will govern property disposition.
- Living trusts – living trusts hold property for beneficiaries, who are usually the same people who contribute the property to a trust. Living trusts may be advantageous for some clients.
- Living Will. A Living Will, often called an Advance Directive, is a document provides instruction for medical care and related matters in the event of a terminal and incurable condition as the result of an illness or accident in which a person cannot communicate their wishes. Living wills can be used to avoid unnecessary suffering and often expensive life prolonging treatment that can drain an estate. All adults should have a living will so that any end-of-life desired treatment can be respected.
- Trusts that operate after death. Trusts can be created based upon the assets that are held at the time of death. Often, if there is the possibility that a parent may die with minor children, a trust may be desirable to provide for future needs of the children, and to prevent them from receiving a large lump-sum payment at a time when such money may not be spent wisely. A trust may be beneficial for some clients, depending upon their circumstances and the likely value of their estate.
The Cost of a Simple Will
A Simple Will divides your assets among your heirs, names a guardian of minor children, and names a personal representative to see that your wishes are honored.
No good attorney would prepare a Simple Will without also preparing a General Durable Power of Attorney, Living Will and Health Care Power. We offer these 4 documents as a package for $400 for an individual, and $550 for couples.
Call Us So That We May Help You Protect Your Family and Interests
A comprehensive estate plan can save your family money and frustration. Estate planning is essential for ensuring that you and your family’s hard-earned assets are passed on in the manner that you feel is appropriate. Estate planning laws and procedures vary greatly in different states; as experienced Indianapolis estate planning lawyers we can help create a customized estate plan that is right for you.
We will take the time to learn about you, your family, and your assets. We also work with your advisors, such as your personal financial advisor, CPA, insurance agent and other professionals helping you plan for your future, to get a complete picture of your financial situation and long-term goals. Let us help you create an estate plan designed to ensure the orderly administration of your estate, minimize estate taxes and provide for the comfort and financial security of your family.