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Do you have an estate plan?

Unfortunately, some of the things you don’t want to think about could quickly reduce the value of your estate to zero.


Protect your assets, preserve your property for your use during your lifetime, benefit those you choose after you’re gone, and maintain the highest possible control and quality of life during a physical or mental disability.

Are you ready to plan your estate? Contact us to get started.

We Specilaize In The Following

Legal Services & Practice Areas

Estate Planning (EP) 101

Asset Protection / Medicaid Basics

Special Needs Planning / Trusts

EP For Young Families

Assets held in one spouse’s/parent’s name alone will not automatically pass to the surviving spouse/parent. The laws of intestacy state that only half the estate goes to a surviving spouse and the other half of the estate goes to surviving children. This could result in minor’s inheriting substantial assets. A will can direct how your assets pass and protect minors from such an inheritance by keeping the assets in trust until they reach a certain age that the parent can select.

If you have young children, a guardian for your children should be named in your Will. Better for you to decide than to have grieving relatives fighting at an already difficult time.

If you have young children/teens/young adults, trusts should be set up under a Will to help manage inherited assets and prevent waste and squandering by a young and immature beneficiary.

Blended Family Planning

Families where there are children from a prior marriage need to do careful planning.  Most often, a trust of some form is appropriate because it will become irrevocable upon death (if an irrevocable trust is not set up from the outset) and the surviving second spouse cannot use his/her own will to change the original estate plan and disinherit children of the deceased spouse from a prior marriage.

In most states, a spouse cannot be disinherited – meaning a surviving spouse is entitled to some portion of a deceased spouse’s estate no matter what a Will or Trust says.  Careful planning is needed to make sure a spouse and any children receive the share the testator wishes.  Pre-nuptial and post-nuptial agreements can be very important to achieve results other what the law states.  Almost all assets of a decedent are included when calculating what a surviving spouse is entitled to.

Advance Directives For College Students

Any child over the age of 18 (ahem college students) should have a health care proxy.  Being mom or dad isn’t enough anymore when a child is recognized as an adult.  HIPAA laws prevent medical professionals and medical facilities from releasing any information without the consent of a patient. 

Any child over the age of 18 (ahem college students) should have a Power of Attorney.  Even though your check still pays that tuition bill, report cards and all school correspondence and communication are addressed to the student. A school would need a student’s consent to discuss grades with a parent – as difficult as that is to accept.

EP For Non-married Couples 

Estate planning is especially important for couples who are not married as no or few legal rights accrue just from dating or living with another individual.  If you wish for your nonmarried partner to share in your estate, and protect the right to live in a shared home, some basic estate planning or changes to real estate documents are necessary.

EP After Divorce

The consequences of a divorce apply to estate planning as well.  Your “ex” is no longer included as your next of kin.  If there is no will in place, the intestacy laws will again apply.  This can again result in minor children, or even elderly parents or siblings inheriting your estate.

Meet Our Attorneys


Mary Soyka

Partner, Managing Member

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Cathy Soyka


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