Tips from an Experienced Will Lawyer Ridgefield, CT Counts On
8 Tips to Consider When Writing Your Estate Plan
John Sweeney of Sweeney Legal is a will lawyer in Ridgefield, CT who recognizes the importance of planning one’s estate. Though you may be in good health and not yet at an advanced age, it’s never too soon to consider your loved ones’ futures after your passing. In fact, if you do not have an estate plan in place prior to your passing, it may be up to the Court to distribute your estate’s assets without any regard for your final wishes.
Such a scenario can cause further grief and turmoil for your loved ones after you pass away. Creating a legally sound estate plan in advance of your final moments can offer you immediate relief and peace of mind with the knowledge that your legacy is secure. As a will lawyer in Ridgefield, CT, John Sweeney can be of great assistance to you with this.
Below are the eight most common things people usually include in their estate plan. However, do keep in mind that your estate plan should be revisited and edited as needed about every three to five years or as life circumstances change. John Sweeney will be pleased to offer his legal services to you at that time, and if you have need for a will lawyer to make changes to an existing will, call him today.
What an Estate Plan May Include
Those who have not yet created an estate plan can benefit from meeting with a will lawyer in Ridgefield, CT such as John Sweeney of Sweeney Legal. He will be happy to address any questions or concerns you may have during the process. Listed here are eight tips to consider when writing your estate plan:
- Creation of a Will: a list of beneficiaries who shall inherit your assets (property, monetary value, treasures, vehicles, etc.) after death. Your will lawyer in Ridgefield, CT can provide guidance as to which of your possessions you might want to include.
- Establish a Living Trust: writing a living trust can help prevent your loved ones from going through probate court in regards to your estate. A will lawyer in Ridgefield, CT such as John Sweeney of Sweeney Legal can explain the various types of living trusts, and which one might best suit your needs.
- Health Care Declarations: in the event you become incapacitated or disabled, these health care declarations include your preferences for medical care.
- Naming a Guardian: if your children are minors when you pass, this is someone who you choose to be their legal guardian.
- Appoint Power of Attorney (Financial): otherwise referred to as a durable power of attorney for finances, this is someone you appoint to take care of your finances if you become unable to handle them yourself.
- Communicate with Beneficiaries: consider being open with your beneficiaries about what is included in your estate plan, so they have an idea of what to expect down the line. Your will lawyer in Ridgefield, CT can offer you additional tips not included here.
- Organize Key Documents: the person you appoint as will executor may need to have access to the most important documents regarding your estate (including will, trust, deeds, stocks, insurance policies, retirement plans, credit cards, unpaid taxes and any other documents with final instructions). Be sure they will have access to this information when the time arrives.
- Consider Funeral Expenses: you can create a payable upon death account with your bank, into which you can deposit funds into to pay for your funeral expenses.
John Sweeney of Sweeney Legal is a will lawyer who has dedicated himself to providing legal services to his community of Ridgefield, CT. Contact him today to learn more about how he can help you preserve your legacy and ensure that your final wishes are followed by those you leave behind.
A Will Lawyer Ridgefield, CT Families Trust Discusses Fraudulent Wills
Every day, will lawyers hear terrible stories about how a client’s loved one was taken advantage of by some unscrupulous person. A common scenario usually involves an elderly person who was being helped by a home health aide for a few years and then passes away. When their will is read, their family discovers that no one in the family is receiving any part of the person’s estate as they had been told in the past. Instead, a new will was executed that leaves everything to the home health aide.
At Sweeney Legal, LLC, we are here to help you and your family should you find yourself victims of suspected will fraud. Contact our office today to meet with one of our Ridgefield, CT will lawyers and find out how we can help.
When Should You Contest a Will?
Any time you think that a will does not really reflect what your loved one’s last wishes, you should contact an estate litigation attorney to contest the will. When you contest, you are requesting the court to declare the will invalid.
There are several reasons why a judge may declare a will invalid. One of those reasons is if the evidence shows that the decedent was unduly influenced by someone when the will was being executed. In the above scenario, a will lawyer would present evidence to the court that would show the type of influence or manipulation the home health care aide may have used to get the elderly person to change their will and leave all the assets to the aide instead of family members.
There may also be evidence that the decedent suffered from some type of condition that would have prohibited them from having the mental capacity to create the changes in the will, such as Alzheimer’s disease or dementia.
The will can also be contested if it is suspected that it was forged and it was not signed by the decedent. The same rules apply if the will was altered in some way without the decedent’s consent.
Another reason why a will can be declared invalid is if the decedent signed the will but did not know what the actual instructions were – in this scenario, distributing all assets to the healthcare aide and not family members.
A will lawyer in Ridgefield, CT will carefully evaluate your case and gather all pertinent evidence and witness testimony to determine what grounds will apply in your situation.
How Do I Contest a Will?
In order to be successful at contesting a will, you need a skilled and experienced will lawyer. If you believe that your loved one’s will does not reflect their last wishes, the legal team at Sweeney Legal, LLC can help you determine if the will is able to be contested and on what grounds. We will then work diligently to get you the best outcome based on the circumstances of your case.
Call our firm today to set up a free and confidential case evaluation with a will lawyer Ridgefield, CT clients recommend and find out how we can help.