At Weitz Law Firm, we provide comprehensive representation for wills, trusts, estate plans, health care directives, power of attorney, asset protection strategies, transfer of homes and other property, and Medicaid planning. We can discuss your short-term and long-term goals, family dynamics, and other circumstances to help establish an estate plan tailored to your needs. Our tax planning lawyer has the technical knowledge to provide guidance regarding tax minimization strategies and tax consequences.
Estate Planning is for Everyone. Now. Many people think they are too young or don’t have the net worth to benefit from an estate plan. Below are some important reasons to plan your estate now.
- Loss of Capacity: An estate plan lets you choose who will manage your affairs if you become incompetent and unable to manage them. Without a plan, the courts will select that person.
- Minor Children: An estate plan allows you to nominate the guardian of your choice for your children if you die. Without a plan, that vital decision is left to the court.
- Inheritance: An estate plan allows you to decide who gets your assets, and when and how they receive them. Without a plan, your assets pass to your heirs according to Washington’s intestacy laws and those heirs will receive your assets without the benefit of your direction or of trust protection.
- Blended Families: An estate plan allows you to determine what goes to your current spouse and what goes to children from a prior marriage or marriages. Without a plan, children from different marriages may not be treated as you would wish.
- Children with Special Needs: An estate plan allows you to set up Supplemental Needs Trusts that will allow your child to remain eligible for government benefits while using the trust assets to pay for non-covered expenses. Without a plan, a child with special needs may be disqualified from receiving Medicaid or SSI benefits, and may have to use his or her inheritance to pay for their care.
- Probate Avoidance: An estate plan often allows you to bypass probate entirely. Probate can be long and expensive. It also results in your assets becoming a matter of public record.
- Business Ownership: An estate plan allows you to decide who will own and control your business after you are gone. Without a plan, you cannot name your successor and your family may lose control of the business.
We provide result-oriented guidance to ensure your wills, trusts, and directives protect your wealth and provide ease of financial management and health care decisions, as well as to help preserve a legacy for your family.
Our practice includes the following services:
- Pour-over wills
- Spendthrift trusts
- Charitable remainder trusts
- Living trusts
- Revocable and irrevocable trusts
- Testamentary trusts
Having a properly drafted trust can help ensure that your estate will avoid the probate process completely, enabling your heirs to receive their inheritances quicker and with little or no court intervention. We help our clients navigate and execute iron-clad documents, including:
- Revocable living trusts
- Individual trusts
- Special Needs Trusts
Power of Attorney
It is important to make necessary arrangements for the handling of your affairs in case you experience an accident, a sudden illness, or a planned or unplanned absence.
Health Care Directives
A Health Care Directive is a legal document that instructs others about your medical care in the event you become unable to make decisions on your own. It becomes effective only under the circumstances described in the document. It allows you to appoint a health care agent (a “durable power of attorney for health care”) and/or prepare specific instructions for your future health care (a “living will”)
Medical care and long-term care can quickly and easily drain a family of all their assets. Asset protection for seniors is becoming more critical as people are living longer, suffering from more debilitating diseases, and needing more long-term care than ever before. Understanding Medicaid and how such state and federal assistance works can be an overwhelming task during a stressful time for many families. Many families needlessly spend down their life savings on nursing home expenses. Our Medicaid planning attorneys at Weitz Law Firm protect our clients’ assets from being entirely consumed by nursing home and assisted living costs and allow them to pass more of their savings to their family and other loved-ones.
There are specific rules associated with the transfer of assets when dealing with Medicaid eligibility. Transferring assets without complying with these rules could result in long periods of ineligibility. Waiting too long to transfer your assets to your family or loved ones may make it impossible to protect your assets. Call (425) 889-9300 to schedule a free consultation with one of our Kirkland Medicaid Planning attorneys to learn more.