Estate Planning Mediation
The Estate Planning Process
Estate planning is the legal activity in preparation for and anticipation of death. After an entire lifetime of saving, investing in, and developing an estate, most individuals’ main concern is what will happen to their property after they pass away. In order to make sure your wealth goes into the right hands, make sure you follow proper estate planning procedures. These procedures determine where and to whom property is distributed, as well as a number of other personal matters that must be seen to. The main legal document that you will be dealing with is a will. Your will, or testament, is the legal declaration of who will be managing your estate and to whom property is transferred. Some of the other legal documents you may have to manage include trusts, beneficiary designations, property ownership, gifts, and the powers of attorney (POA).
To assure that property is distributed accurately, probate is needed. This is the first step in the process of administering the estate. Essentially, a probate ascertains the legality of the will and testament as well as resolves any claims or taxes on the deceased's property. Before any distribution occurs, the will document must be verified and approved by a probate court. Once this occurs, it becomes a legal document with all the weight of the law. At that point, it can be enforced by whomever was appointed as the executor of the will.
The Benefits of a Mediator
For anyone, death is very difficult. It becomes even harder when it is the death of a close family member. To compound the pain of mourning, the family has to deal with the complicated legal issues surrounding the management of the deceased's estate. This process can quickly turn into a frustrated quarrel between family members. Though estate planning is intended to make this process quick, easy, and straightforward, this is rarely the case. When this procedure becomes convoluted, it is best to have a mediator. A legal mediator can be the difference between a smooth distribution and an all-out fight. One of the chief benefits of having an estate planning mediator is the presence of an effective communicator. This professional will understand the legal minutiae that are behind the will and the probate process. They will know what is and is not allowed based on the document before them. A mediator can also act as an unbiased intermediary in an emotionally heated issue.
It is very common for an individual to die before all the loose ends are taken care of in their estate. This can lead to considerable confusion and displeasure among the remaining family members. If you or your family has found themselves in such a position, the best thing you can do is to hire a mediator. If you are dealing with trust and will contests, problems with probate and trust distribution, disputes with beneficiaries, or creditor claims, our firm can help.
At Feldmann Nagel Margulis an estate planning lawyer is ready to come alongside your family during this trying time. You deserve a mediator who has extensive experience in this area of the law and has the compassion to ensure that everyone is treated fairly. With years of experience, our associates can provide the mediation your family needs during this difficult time. Estate planning and probate is a difficult and confusing process. If legal issues have arisen in your situation, contact us to mediate your case.