Serving Clients & Their Families in Greenwood Village, CO and the Surrounding Areas
Estate planning touches on many important aspects of life. It begins with protecting yourself and your personal dignity, and extends to your legacy by protecting your loved ones and your hard-earned assets.
Follow the links below to learn more about the services which we provide at the Law Offices of Francis J. Evans.
Estate Planning Fundamentals
There are many legal strategies involved in estate planning, including the preparation and implementation of wills, revocable living trusts, irrevocable trusts, durable powers of attorney, and health care directives as well as other tools.
These strategies and tools can only properly be utilized with the assistance of a skilled attorney who focuses on estate planning on a day-to-day basis. Coordination and integration are critical in designing an estate plan which will work when the time comes. In this context, exploration of all reasonable options and attention to detail on the part of the attorney are critical.
In attaining the right estate planning solutions for our clients, skilled legal counseling is critical in every case.
Learn more about the Estate Planning process.
Medicaid Crisis Planning
In our practice we also assist individuals who need long-term care, but cannot really afford the $8,000-$10,000 monthly cost of care on an out-of-pocket basis. Most often, we work with the families of such individuals to protect as much of the assets available, while achieving the long-term care goals desired — all within the bounds of the law.
Frequently, family members, including adult children reside out of state.
We welcome the opportunity to work with those families too.
Learn more about Medicaid Crisis Planning.
Probate & Estate Administration
Probate is a court-supervised process for distributing the individually-owned assets of a deceased person. In the narrow sense, the word “probate” derives from Latin and means the proof of the validity of a Will in court. In a broader sense, “probate” means the administration of an estate, including certain court filings and publication of notices, collection of assets, payment of required debts and taxes and distribution of assets to the beneficiaries of the estate. Assets are distributed to beneficiaries (designated by the person who established the Will) and in accordance with the instructions written in the decedent’s Will … or under the laws of intestacy which apply when a person dies without a Will.
In the course of probate administration of the estate, a separate bank account for estate monies must be opened, a Federal Tax ID number obtained, documents drafted which reflect all of the credits and debits made to that account, plus an inventory of the estate’s assets must be prepared by the Personal Representative (executor) of a decedent’s will. After at least six months have passed, if all estate administrative actions have been completed, it is possible at that time to complete the documents necessary for the closure of the estate proceedings.
With proper attention to your needs/wishes and with advice on your asset positioning prior to your death , your estate planning attorney can assist you, and your heirs, with the smooth transition of your bequests.
In certain circumstances, estate administration can be complex, take a longer period of time and can require legal work designed to protect the integrity of the Will and the intentions of the deceased (and protect the Personal Representative acting for the estate). But if you have planned well, these matters can be handled smoothly.
Even though the estate administration process carries a lot of responsibilities, we can help guide you through the process as sensitively and comprehensively as possible. We will consistently try to make the process as straightforward and efficient as possible.
Learn more about Probate and Estate Administration.
Trust Administration and Settlement
As is the case with the administration of an estate established under a Will after the death of the Grantor (maker) of the Will, there is a need to administer and settle Trusts established during the lifetime of the Grantor (maker), and to follow a process in doing so. Most often the assistance of an attorney skilled and experienced in the field of trusts is necessary, if not certainly advisable.
Overall, however, when utilizing and dealing with a revocable living trust, the process of trust administration is usually less involved than the process of administering an estate.
Most often there is no court involvement with the administration of a trust and, unless there are problematic trust assets, the process can often be concluded within a relative short period of time. It is usually necessary, however, to deal with the income tax implications of the trust administration, and the proper time to review this carefully must be given.
At the Law Offices of Francis J. Evans, we will be happy to discuss with you all legal assistance related to the administration of trusts under which you have appointed trustee or successor trustee.
Learn more about planning for Long-Term Care.