Wills, Trusts & Estate Planning
Brady Law offers decades of experience in the creation and implementation of Last Will and Testament, Trust, and Financial and Medical Power of Attorney directives. Let Attorney Brady help you make plans now that will ease the decision-making process for the rest of your life and thereafter.
Last Will and Testament
A Last Will and Testament or “Will” is a document signed by you as mandated by the law. In the Will, you spell out your wishes for once you are deceased. This includes appointing a Personal Representative or manager to handle your affairs. In the Will, you state who is to receive your property after your passing. You will also state who is to care for your minor children in a parental manner and manage the finances of the minors, the Guardian and Conservator, respectively. This document is only effective after your passing and once it has been formally admitted by the Probate Court. A “Last Will and Testament” only passes property you own in your name or only owned by you at your passing.
Creation of a Trust enables you to have more control over your property and affairs, both during your life and thereafter. A person who manages a Trust is called a “Trustee.” The Trustee must follow your directives within the Trust. The first Trustee is usually you. Normally, you can change, amend, or revoke a Trust if you want to. During your life, a Successor Trustee to you can manage the trust property for your benefit. For example, a Trustee can pay bills or expenses for you. Trusts are not mandatory under the law, but often are very helpful in caring for yourself, your spouse, children, and others. If you have a Trust, a Will is also required. Property is transferred into the name of the Trust. Trust creation can be an effective way to protect privacy, specify detailed instructions, and avoid having to be in Probate Court. Your Will would simply “pour over” your property, not already transferred to the Trust, to the Trust at your passing.
Financial Power of Attorney
A Financial Power of Attorney is another document where you, as “principal,” appoint another as your “agent” to perform some financial, economic, and property management functions for you during your lifetime. It is effective at signing and delivery of the document to your “agent.” A Power of Attorney is not operative after your passing. This is a very practical device. It is a document that should be signed long before you encounter a disaster that may prevent you or a loved one from having such a Power of Attorney.
Medical Power of Attorney
A Medical Power of Attorney is where you appoint an individual, usually a family member, to make medical health care decisions for you if you are unable to make the decisions yourself. This can include, if you desire, the authorization to discontinue or refuse treatment where (1) you are unable to make your own health care decisions and (2) your medical recovery is not anticipated by your doctors.
“Jim Brady has helped our family in all our legal matters for almost 25 years. We first called him to prepare our first Will. A few years ago, he completed another Will to reflect our changing family circumstances.
“When our son decided that college was not in his future, Jim asked us if he could talk with him to change his mind. Jim spent a lot of time with him that afternoon explaining how important a college education would be to him. I’ll always remember how hard Jim tried to convince him.
“In the last year, our son was involved in a complicated domestic situation that seemed impossible to solve. My wife and I called Jim and he said he would assist our family. Jim took all the stress out of the legal process for us the first time we all sat down and talked. He explained what our course of action was going to be and what outcome he expected. Jim answered all our questions and was very patient with us. With Jim’s legal expertise and help, our family finally got back to normal.
“We feel Jim is a very competent and experienced lawyer. Plus, he has a great sense of humor! We are fortunate to have the privilege of having Jim Brady as our lawyer and our friend all these years.”