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DC Estate Planning Lawyers

Antonoplos & Associates Attorneys at Law has been serving the needs of clients throughout DC, Maryland, and Virginia for more than 20 years. In addition to providing excellence, integrity, and credibility in our legal services, we also offer you the customized personal service that your family’s unique needs warrant. Our DC estate planning lawyers insistence on virtual 24/7 availability never takes us far from any sudden questions or late-breaking concerns you may have.

Skilled Legal Assistance For Estate Planning Matters

Our DC estate planning lawyers provide invaluable assistance to you and your family in all estate planning matters, including:

Asset Protection

A goal of estate planning is to protect the property you have worked hard to accumulate so that you can pass it to your heirs. We can show you how to legally preserve, transfer, and protect your wealth and assets by using a variety of estate planning tools, including various trust agreements. In addition to protecting your property from your creditors, you can also protect the property you leave to heirs from your heirs’ creditors, ex-spouses, personal judgments, and bankruptcy actions.

Issues Concerning the Elderly

Whether you need to appoint a guardian to look out for an elderly loved one’s interests or need to ensure that a plan is in place to help care for a loved one with specific needs, we are here to help.

Medicaid planning is legal and ethical. Many individuals require long-term care. Because nursing homes and assisted care facilities are expensive, many families need government assistance to help pay the cost for long-term care. However, Medicaid is a needs-based program. Our DC estate planning lawyers can help you develop a plan that maintains your loved one’s eligibility for benefits while protecting assets from Medicaid liens.

Powers of Attorney

Establishing power of attorney can help give you the peace of mind that comes with knowing your decisions will be respected should you ever be in a position where you cannot make decisions on your own.

A Durable General Power of Attorney appoints a person to handle your financial affairs. Your agent can perform any financial transaction in your name that you can perform legally unless the power of attorney restricts or prohibits that authority. The “durable” clauses in the power of attorney continue the agent’s powers in full force and effect even if you become incapacitated.

Guardianships

When an aging or ill relative cannot competently handle his or her personal affairs, we can help establish a guardianship to ensure that they receive the help they need. A guardian handles the person’s physical care and financial matters.

Also, parents need to choose guardians for their minor children as part of their estate plan. Guardians are typically named in a parent’s will.

Wills

Your will dictates the distribution of your property after your death. Without a will, DC’s intestate laws decide who receives your property and the distribution of the property to heirs. Friends and charities are not considered heirs under intestate laws. If you want to leave property to a charitable organization or friend, you must have a will or create a trust during your lifetime.

You choose a personal representative to administer your estate and name that person in your will. Through your will, you can name a guardian for your minor child and create a testamentary trust to hold your child’s inheritance. Creating a testamentary trust prevents your 18-year old child from receiving his or her entire inheritance. Using this trust prevents your child from using and possibly wasting their entire inheritance while still in high school.

The drafting of a will can be complex. Certain language must be used to preserve your wishes correctly. We can help guide you through the process of drafting a will and ensure that it accurately reflects your wishes.

Trust Agreements

The establishment of a trust can help your family avoid a lengthy probate process and avoid estate taxes, among other benefits. Our attorneys can help you explore your options and determine which type of trust is right for you. Some trust agreements offer a high level of asset protection. This may be necessary if you own a business or you anticipate that an heir has substantial debt. There are many types of trust agreements you can use depending on your goals and needs.

A living trust is designed to provide instructions for your care should you ever become incapacitated. It can also include instructions regarding how your estate should be distributed upon your death.

With a special needs trust, you can provide for a child or an adult who has a disability without jeopardizing their eligibility for government benefits. Pet trusts allow individuals to provide for the care and upkeep of their pets after their death. An animal cannot inherit money or property. With a pet trust, you can appoint a trustee to manage the trust and use the funds to care for your pet after your death.

A DC self-settled trust can help protect your most important assets should you ever run into difficulty meeting your financial obligations down the road. This type of trust can be particularly valuable to a person who is personally liable for a business’s obligations.

Our DC estate planning attorneys can explain trusts in further detail, including the pros and cons of various trust agreements.

Probate

The probate process can be lengthy and expensive. Our DC probate attorneys can help resolve issues that may occur during probate. Furthermore, we take proactive steps to help your family members avoid this complicated process. We assist personal representatives as they complete their duties and responsibilities. Our lawyers also represent family members who wish to contest a will or petition to remove a personal representative.

Retirement planning

Few people fully account for how they are going to handle their retirement. Whether you are years away from retiring or need guidance in your retirement right now, we are here for you.

Contact our DC Estate Planning Lawyers for More Information

For more information regarding our DC estate planning lawyers, contact us at 202-803-5676. You can also directly schedule a consultation with one of our skilled attorneys.