Drafting Wills, Living Wills, Health Care Surrogate And Preneed Guardian

One reason so many people delay or avoid creating estate plans is a sense that there is simply an overwhelming number of options to consider ... to say nothing of speaking with a lawyer about end-of-life issues.

This is why, in addition to offering experienced legal counsel, our attorneys focus on providing stress-free legal help that takes the fear out of what is one of the most important things anyone can do. Our firm is here to show you that estate planning doesn't have to be scary; in fact, it can and should be simple and rewarding.

Every Estate Plan Needs A Solid Foundation. We'll Help You Get Started.

There are several documents that you might consider "basic" in that nearly all adults, no matter how big their families are or large their estates are, can benefit from them. We recommend that the vast majority of our clients have at least some combination of the following documents:

  • Will: This is the foundational document that states to whom you would like your personal property to go following your death. It will also name a personal representative who will be responsible for ensuring that the terms of the will are carried out according to your wishes when the time comes.
  • Living will: Although this has the term "will" in it, this document actually relates to your health care priorities in the event that you are incapacitated (that is, unable to make decisions on your own). A living will states when medical care providers are to stop giving treatment and/or indicates that you do not wish to receive resuscitation or "life support" if you become gravely ill or injured.
  • Health care surrogate: This document also deals with your health care priorities. It allows you to designate someone (a family member or close friend, for example) to make medical decisions in the event of your incapacitation. You can determine the scope of authority you give: For example, you can choose to give your surrogate only very limited powers, or give him or her full control over your health care.
  • Preneed guardian: A guardian is someone who is nominated to handle legal and financial matters in the event that you are incapacitated. Additionally, parents can designate a guardian for their minor children so that if the unthinkable happens, their children will be protected.

These are only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the legal documents that may benefit you and your loved ones. We also offer experienced counsel with trusts and other asset protection strategies.

Begin building your estate plan today. For a free consultation with an experienced estate planning lawyer, call our Fort Myers office at 239-344-9430 (877-243-1624 toll free) or email us.