Staunton Estate Planning

Estate Planning Attorney near Staunton

Helping You Plan for Yourself & Your Loved Ones

It may be daunting to think about creating a comprehensive estate plan, but it can be one of the best things you do during your lifetime. An estate plan is more than planning for what happens to your wealth and property after you pass away. It can also secure your assets and protect your predetermined medical care decisions.

We can help clients with the following matters and more:

Your estate plan can and should afford you peace of mind about whatever the future holds. No matter what your level of service may be, or how large or small your estate is, Norton Health Law can help you make decisions that will matter later on. We offer clients comprehensive estate planning support personalized to their unique needs. If your estate plan needs an overhaul, or if you don’t have one at all, reach out to our estate planning attorney near Staunton for help.

Norton Health Law offers each potential client a free initial consultation. Schedule yours today by calling (434) 216-4020 or by submitting an online contact form.

Do You Have a Will in Place?

A will is the most fundamental component of an estate plan. If you make no other important decisions for yourself or your loved ones, you should at least have a will in place. Dying intestate – without a will – means your estate will be divided among your immediate family, in accordance with state law.

Having a valid will in place, however, can help you lay out your specific wishes for how you want your estate to be distributed upon your death. You can also make important decisions that could lead to costly legal battles among your surviving relatives.

Some of these decisions include the following:

  • Who will be your children’s legal guardian?
  • Who should inherit specific family heirlooms?
  • Who should act as caretaker for your pets?
  • Who should you appoint to administer your estate and ensure your wishes are carried out?

Your will may be disputed by your relatives, but one that is properly prepared can reduce the risk of confusion and heartache among your loved ones. Get the help you need by reaching out to our estate planning attorney near Staunton at Norton Health Law.

Establish a Trust with Us Today

If avoiding probate is your goal, forming a trust may be a viable option for your estate planning needs. There are many types of trusts for a variety of specific purposes, but fundamentally there are revocable living trusts and irrevocable trusts.

A revocable living trust allows you to benefit from what you fund into it during your lifetime. When you do pass away, the trust will skip probate proceedings because you named other beneficiaries to it. Anything left in your trust will be used to pay your creditors, taxes, and then be distributed among your beneficiaries according to your wishes.

An irrevocable trust can be an important tool for asset protection, avoiding federal estate taxes, and protecting a loved one’s qualification for public benefits. By placing money and property into this trust, you essentially relinquish your personal ownership over it, protecting it from creditors’ claims against you. This, however, precludes the ability of the trustmaker to modify terms of the trust unless consent from all beneficiaries is granted.

Different kinds of trusts you may wish to form can help you address issues such as the following:

  • Special needs planning
  • Charitable giving
  • Asset protection
  • Pet welfare

Plan Your Future Medical Care Needs Today

Your estate plan can account for matters that occur when you are in a critical medical condition or approaching the end of your life. Establishing Advance Medical Directives can help you predetermine many important decisions so that your loved ones and doctors will know your wishes when you are not able to communicate them in the moment.

You may be severely injured from an accident or have become debilitated by a disease. When you are in such a condition, Advance Medical Directives make it possible for you to decide ahead of time if doctors should attempt to preserve your life through resuscitation or by intervening with medical treatments and devices.

Determine Powers of Attorney

If you are incapacitated by a serious injury or illness, you may need someone else to make important decisions for you. By designating a Durable Power of Attorney, you can name one or more trusted person to act as your agent for important personal or business affairs when you are unable.

Powers of Attorney may be granted for a period of time or only for specific circumstances and immediately dissolve upon reaching a resolution. Our estate planning attorney near Staunton at Norton Health Law can advise you of all options available to you.

Conservatorships & Guardianships

If you are the loved one of someone in need who has not executed an Advance Medical Directive or assigned a Durable Power of Attorney, you can seek to establish a conservatorship or guardianship for them.

A guardian is someone appointed by a probate judge to make important decisions for someone else who is disabled and unable to provide for their own care. These decisions can range from day-to-day care, healthcare, housing, education, and more.

A conservator is another individual appointed by a probate judge to look after the financial welfare of a disabled person. This person will typically manage finances, business affairs, and the like for the conservatee.

We Can Help You Plan for the Future

Regardless of your need for assistance, our estate planning attorney near Staunton can help. Norton Health Law has built comprehensive estate plans that fulfilled prior clients’ goals and helped them ensure they and their loved ones are protected for the future.

Learn more about what we can do for you by taking advantage of a free initial consultation. Get in touch with our firm today by calling (434) 216-4020 or by submitting an online contact form.

“Beth Norton is the best attorney for estate planning, elder and consumer health care law.”

- Fred J., RN, PhD, Senior Care Advisor
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