Ocean County Elder Law Attorney
It may be unpleasant to consider your death but putting a little consideration into your wishes now can make a big difference for your family. Losing a loved one brings a considerable amount of grief. If they pass without a will, it can also bring a huge amount of legal trouble. However, making a plan with an Ocean County elder law attorney ahead of time can make this time much smoother for your family so that they can focus on grieving.
One of our attorneys will get to know what makes you and your family unique so that we can give you the tools you need to prepare a plan that will work for your family.
What We Can Do For You
Most people know they need a will, even if they have limited assets to leave behind. You may not have much money or valuable property, but you almost certainly have at least a few sentimental objects. Planning for what happens can prevent tension and arguments between your loved ones. If you have a significant estate, this is even more important.
Most people require significant medical care near the end of their life, either at home or at a residential facility. These services are extremely expensive and likely not covered by your insurance. However, some ways (such as Medicaid) make them more affordable. An Ocean County elder law attorney can help you understand how to protect your assets and pay for the care that you may need.
We can also help you determine whom you can trust to make decisions for you if you are no longer capable of doing so for yourself. If you are married, this is likely your spouse. It could also be a friend, child, or even an adult grandchild. By making this decision ahead of time, you give yourself time to speak with this person about your wishes and ensure that they know what you want if the time comes.
It’s Never Too Early to Plan
Even if you are currently in excellent health, it’s a good idea to plan for what will happen to you and your assets at the end of your life. We recommend that everyone has a will, especially if you have children. Your will is the last message you get to leave your family. With the help of an Ocean County elder law attorney, this planning means you can confidently enjoy your golden years that your estate is in good hands. The only way your wishes can be followed is if other people know what they are, so make that clear today.
When you work with our team, you can be confident that you are working with the best. We are proud to help individuals and families navigate emotional conversations and think about the legacy that they want to leave behind. We’ll help you through this emotional step so that you can create a clear plan for the end of your life. Then, you can focus on enjoying the time you have today and for years to come.
Ocean County Estate Administration Attorney
If you have been asked to serve as the executor of someone’s estate, they have deep trust in you. They think you can be depended upon to fulfill their final wishes. However, it is also a massive responsibility. An executor must navigate the legal and financial systems to ensure that taxes are paid, accounts are closed, and assets are appropriately divided. It can be extremely daunting if you lack training in these things.
You’ve also been tasked with this at an extremely difficult time in your life – when you are grieving the loss of someone who meant a lot to you. These systems can be challenging to navigate even without the additional stress of grief. Add on the emotions of a loss, and it can feel nearly impossible.
Working with an Ocean County estate administration attorney can make it easier. We are well versed in estate administration and offer services ranging from advice to carrying out the entire process on your behalf.
The Process of Estate Administration
The first step of estate administration is typically probate. If the deceased left a surviving spouse, their will likely does not need to go through probate – their assets are left to that spouse. In other cases, the will needs to be authenticated. This means that it needs to be brought to court and signed off on as valid. Most probate processes are simple, especially if the will is signed and notarized. You might need to gather evidence to legitimize the will in rare cases. We can help.
Next, you may need to pay final bills and close accounts. Then, you’ll need to determine the value of any remaining assets, pay taxes, and divide the estate according to the deceased’s wishes. This can be challenging, especially if their property includes real estate, vehicles, or other physical property. You might need to work with an appraiser, accountant, or other professional. We can help you navigate this process and recommend other professionals if required.
There’s also your own grief. It can be easy to bury your feelings while going through the process of administrating an estate. Still, it is vital to care for yourself. We can connect you with mental health professionals who can provide essential support.
Working with Ocean County Estate Administration Attorneys
We have helped countless Ocean County families with this process and are eager to help yours. If your situation is more complicated than we have outlined above – perhaps including a trust, planned giving, or a dispute between heirs – have no fear. We are well versed in these situations and can help you understand your legal obligations and options. Getting an attorney on your team is especially important in complex situations.
Regardless of your family’s situation, reach out to us today and find out how an Ocean County estate administration attorney can help you navigate this process.
Ocean County Estate Litigation Attorney
If you have suffered any major loss in your life, you know how draining and emotional that time can be. Grieving is incredibly difficult and takes up most of your mental bandwidth. The last thing you want to add to that experience is going to court.
However, if a will is unclear, it can become a dispute between family members. Sometimes the only way to resolve that dispute is by turning to the legal system. If court is necessary, you want an Ocean County estate litigation attorney on your team.
Why Hire Us?
We take pride in giving our clients all the support and information they need to make it through estate litigation in Ocean County. Navigating this kind of dispute does not have to feel impossible if you have a skilled professional on your side.
The distribution of assets can be surprisingly emotional. People want things not just for their monetary value but also for their sentimental value. Determining whom these items were meant for can be impossible if there is no clear will or trust. We have even seen situations where a parent promised the same object to multiple children, resulting in major disputes after death. We can help you devise a solution to this kind of problem.
We can also help with scenarios where a will is invalidated. This could be because the person was incapacitated while writing it, such as if they had dementia. Or, it could be because the will was not properly signed and notarized at the time it was written, resulting in a long struggle through probate. We can help you determine if there is a way to validate the will and come up with an alternative solution if not.
Someone can also sue the estate for unpaid bills or other debts. If you question the legality of any request, an attorney can help.
Partnering with an Ocean County estate litigation attorney early in your process can help ensure everything goes smoothly. If you expect that the will might be questioned, it’s a good idea to get a legal professional involved. We can often help solve these kinds of disputes outside of the court system.
We Can Help You
We have helped many families and estate administrators interpret and execute the wishes of people who have passed, especially in complex situations. If you are dealing with a complex will, a will that no longer makes sense (such as if an heir predeceased the subject of the will), or are concerned that you as the executor may be called into question, it’s a good time to reach out to an Ocean County estate litigation attorney.
We look forward to getting to know you. We take pride in helping our clients navigate stressful situations and come to solutions that work for everyone. Call us today to find out how we can help you get through the estate litigation process.
Ocean County Estate Planning Attorney
Thinking about your own death is an unpleasant experience for most people, but unfortunately, it is necessary. We will all die one day, and if we are lucky, we will have something to leave behind for the people we love.
Estate planning is the act of determining what you want to happen after you are gone. The most common time for people to begin estate planning is when they get married or have a child – but it is never too early or too late to plan for your family’s future.
Why Make a Plan?
If you do not make a plan, likely, your wishes will not be carried out. Your assets may pass along to a sibling instead of an unmarried partner, or your beloved vintage car may be sold for cash instead of passed along to a dear friend that loves it as much as you do. Not creating a plan can also lead to your heirs arguing over your estate – meaning that your loss could tear your family apart.
You also need to carefully consider what should happen to any minor children that you have. Especially when children have no living parent, the question of their care is left up to the state. Work with an Ocean County estate planning attorney to determine guardianship. By doing so, you can be confident that you have chosen the best possible person to care for them. You can also talk with this person about the plan and ensure they are on board to raise your children on your behalf if the worst happens.
You will need to revisit your estate plan as your circumstances change. An Ocean County estate planning attorney can also help you rewrite your will if you have gotten divorced or remarried, your children have become adults, you have acquired significant property, or if any other major changes have occurred in your life. The will you write as a newlywed will likely change significantly by the time you are a retiree.
Your estate plan is the last gift you can give to the people you love. A well-written plan makes it easy for your family to fulfill your wishes. They can focus on their grief rather than squabbling over your estate. Consider it a great gift to them during a difficult time.
Why Work With Us
We will get to know you and what you need as part of your estate planning package. That could mean a will, or it could mean a trust, planned giving, guardianship, long-term care planning, and more. We can explain the options and make sure that you are confident in the choices that you are making.
By working with an Ocean County estate planning attorney, you can be confident that any documents you have drawn will hold up in court. You can save your family much stress by making a single phone call to us today – so what are you waiting for?
Ocean County Life Care Planning Attorney
One of the hallmarks of adulthood is the right to make decisions for yourself, so it can be scary to think about that changing. However, the unfortunate truth is that most people reach a point when there are no longer able to handle that responsibility. At that point, someone else needs to make decisions about your healthcare, finances, and other major questions.
Why Work with an Ocean County Life Care Planning Attorney
The best way to ensure that your wishes are carried out is to clarify them. Creating a life care plan makes it easy for the person taking on this legal responsibility to know what you want. In many cases, they won’t even need to make a decision – the plan you created ahead of time already spells it out. You can decide what kind of medical care you want and be confident that your wishes will be carried out.
Making these decisions ahead of time also removes a huge burden from your family. It can be challenging to guess what a loved one would have wanted or remember long-ago conversations. Creating a life care plan gives them confidence that they are doing exactly what you want.
When Should I Plan?
The earlier you plan, the more that we can help you. For example, we can help you determine what kind of additional support you might be eligible for, such as a pension or governmental benefits. Or, we can help you plan a way to protect your assets while qualifying for Medicaid so that you do not spend your life savings on end-of-life care.
Tragically, people can suffer debilitating accidents at any time, so it’s never too early to begin planning. However, a few life events should trigger you to make a plan.
This could include being diagnosed with a terminal or progressive illness. If the disease is known to impact your mental faculties, it’s a good idea to make your plans before it progresses. Making a plan is one way to take control of a devastating diagnosis. Suffering from a stroke or other health scare can also be a clue that it is a good time to consider your life care plan.
You may also be reminded to create your life care plan if you have recently lost someone you love or seen them suffer from losing their ability to make decisions for themself. Watching someone you love experience this could be the reminder you need to begin creating your own plans. Even if you are perfectly healthy, it is never too early to get your wishes in writing. An Ocean County Life Care Planning Attorney can help.
We will connect you with our elder care coordinator, who will work alongside you and your attorney to create a comprehensive plan and answer all your questions about this process. You can be confident that you will have a plan that will work for you and your family, even if you do not need it for many years. Give us a call today to get started.
Ocean County Medicaid Planning Attorney
Most people need significant medical care towards the end of their life. That might mean moving into a nursing facility, significant in-home care, or even time in a hospital. Medical care is expensive, and traditional health insurance does not cover this kind of care, so many people fear how their finances will weather this experience.
Where Medicaid Fits In
Medicaid is a needs-based government program that financially supports end-of-life care. However, strict income and asset limits exist before a person qualifies for Medicaid. In most cases, families need to significantly spend their savings and even sell off property before qualifying for assistance.
The government also prevents you from making gifts to your family members and qualifying. They will review your previous five years of finances to ensure you have not distributed property to qualify for the program.
Naturally, many people hate the idea of spending decades of savings on the care they need in their last few months of life. You worked hard to purchase a home and save money to make life easier for your children and grandchildren. We can help you plan for your children’s future and still get the care you need.
If you start planning at least five years ahead, you can disburse your assets to your heirs and qualify for Medicaid when needed. Gifts, trusts, and other financial vehicles are all great ways to protect what you have worked so hard for.
Many people also find that they enjoy distributing their assets while they are alive and healthy. By giving funds to your loved ones now, you can see them spend it on their dreams and talk with them about their choices. You could help your child make a down payment on a home or offer to match your grandchild’s savings towards their first car. Making these kinds of generous gifts can be highly fulfilling.
Unfortunately, no one can see the future, so it’s impossible to know when you might begin to need Medicaid coverage. That’s why it’s a good idea to start your planning process early. We can help you determine the best way to protect your assets while ensuring you have what you need for the intervening years.
Reach out to an Ocean County Medicaid Planning Attorney today and find out how we can help you and your family make the most of your available resources.