In these uncertain times, planning for the future is more important than ever. Our office can provide you with the legal tools to protect your family and loved ones if you become incapacitated for any reason. It is not only important to have a will in the event of family emergencies. We provide emergency planning services and a range of incapacity documents to ensure those you trust can access the necessary information in order to step in and help whenever the need arises.
Essential Document Services
Our Essential Document Services include simple wills, unbundled documents, and sliding-scale fees that allow for flexibility in meeting your most urgent needs quickly. While a comprehensive plan with a will is always advisable, if that isn’t possible, we recommend putting certain components of your estate plan in place now, such as medical documents, powers of attorney, and guardianship provisions for minor children. We will work with you to address immediate concerns for the time being, giving you peace of mind and space to consider long-term goals.
During the unprecedented Covid-19 pandemic, all meetings will be carried out virtually, to protect your family. Your initial consultation is always free.
The following documents are included in the streamlined, discounted versions of our full-service estate planning options:
Designates someone you know and trust to make medical decisions for you (referred to as your "Agent") in consultation with your physicians. You must be at least 18 years old to appoint an Agent who will act on your behalf if you are incapacitated or otherwise unable to communicate your wishes. This document includes a HIPAA release authorizing your Agent to obtain your medical information to the extent necessary to carry out its duties, and you may wish to grant other individuals access as well. You are able to continue handling your own affairs, but this document ensures that someone can step in if the need arises. In an environment where your Agents are also vulnerable, it is especially important to choose alternates.
A written statement of your beliefs and choices regarding medical issues if you are terminally ill, in a coma, or otherwise unable to express your wishes. In the case of an emergency, Advance Directives offer peace of mind and eliminate any guesswork by your loved ones as to your wishes.
Designates an Agent to step into your shoes in order to help you manage your financial affairs and make time-sensitive decisions if you are at least 18 years old. Your Agent may only act if you are unable to do so yourself as a result of incapacity or inability to be physically present at a given time. The Agent’s decision-making abilities are specifically limited by the parameters stated in your document. If you do not appoint an Agent, a court proceeding and ongoing supervision may be required, which is an added hardship at this time.
In the event of your death, the will included in this Package designates (1) a personal representative (referred to as “Executor” in some states) to administer your estate, (2) who shall inherit your property, and (3) a guardian for any minor or disabled children you have. This is the most common estate planning document that everyone should create regardless of your financial status, and it is a simplified version of our full-service estate planning (see exclusions below).
- Documents prepared by an attorney with specific experience in this area;
- Attorney supervision of document signing to ensure legality in accordance with temporary Covid-19 requirements;
- Attorney consultation and an ongoing relationship for future needs; and
- We know this is an economically challenging time, so we will work with you to find a payment style and process that works for you and your family.
Essential Documents Services typically do not include any of the following features of our full-service estate planning:
- Review and analysis of your assets and more detailed personal circumstances including for potential tax exposure;
- Estate planning with any type of trusts, customized distribution planning such as for children, or tax-planning techniques;
- Advice regarding optimizing your estate plan with regard to inheritance and administration; and
- Depending on your specific circumstances, the above exclusions may render these services insufficient for use as a long-term plan.
Essential Documents Package (includes the documents listed above and guidance for tangible property items and disposition of last remains):
- $1,000 for an individual
- $1,500 for married couples
Unbundled Documents (applies to Powers of Attorney, Advance Directives, and Guardianship Designations):
- $250 per document for an individual
- $300 for couples
Check out our blog post for more information on planning tips for Covid-19. Contact us to schedule a free consultation regarding your needs at this time and in the future, and ask us about our sliding-scale payment options.