Helping the people of West Alabama preserve their wealth and protect their families.
You have worked hard for the wealth and assets you have acquired over the course of your life. You deserve to control how that property is distributed when the unthinkable happens. Whether you are concerned about providing for the support of your spouse after you pass on or you have young children to provide for, creating a solid estate plan is essential to ensure your final wishes are honored and your loved ones are taken care of.
Estate planning is the effort taken to draft documents designed to protect your accumulated wealth and property to ensure it is properly distributed according to your wishes. Estate planning allows you to direct how you want you health, financial and legal rights managed in the event that you become sick or incapacitated and cannot express your own decisions. There are many different components and tools available to develop an estate plan that will be the best for your unique situation. At the Elmer Law Firm, we look at your particular set of facts, discuss your goals, and come up with an overall plan that satisfies your wishes. It takes a knowledgeable estate planning attorney who can guide you through the process of protecting what you earned so that you can provide for those who depend on you.
Estate Planning Services
Below are some of the services the Elmer Law Firm provides in implementing our client's plans to protect their estates and provide for their families. These are the tools you can use to ensure your wishes are carried out. The goal is to establish how to handle the distributions of your assets after you are gone. Several of these tools are to ensure your wishes are carried out in the event you are no longer able to make your own decisions due to illness. Other documents regard your legal and financial authority in the event that you lose the ability to manage your own affairs.
Wills & Trusts
A will, often formally referred to as your last will and testament, is the document which sets out how your estate is to be distributed, to who, and in what manner upon your death. Depending on the assets owned by the person whose will it is, called the Testator, a will may have any number of provisions. Most frequently however, the will names several specific gifts to specific individuals plus a "catchall" of who is to receive the balance of your assets.
Power of Attorney
A power of attorney is a document which grants another trusted person the authority to act on your behalf in a legal capacity. These documents may be very broad and encompass any decision which you yourself could make which is called a general, or durable power of attorney (DPA). On the other hand, they may be narrowly tailored and only concern a specific event or circumstance which is called a specific power of attorney.
Health Care Directive
A health care directive can be a living will or a health care proxy. These are the most effective when both are present in your estate plan. These documents make it very clear to what extent you want the doctors, nurses, and medical staff to go in order to keep you alive. It can also help your family make the often emotionally complicated and hard decision of when to let you go if the situation arises.