Our Process

Our Process 2018-04-07T16:05:30+00:00

Initial Consultation

I provide a free initial consultation for up to 45 minutes.  During this consultation, we will discuss which of our services will best meet your needs.

Retainer

Following our initial consultation and based upon the information provided, as well as our discussions, I will provide a Letter of Engagement.  The Letter of Engagement will set forth what work I am agreeing to perform as well as the fees and costs associated with that work.

Process

Since Elder Law is a term used to cover many areas of practice including Estate Planning, Guardianship and Medicaid Planning the process used to assist clients may vary.

Initial Consultation

I provide a free initial consultation for up to 45 minutes.  During this consultation, we will discuss whether guardianship is necessary and which form of guardianship is appropriate as well as how it can be tailored to the alleged incapacitated person’s (AIP) needs.

Retainer

Following our initial consultation and based upon the information provided, as well as our discussions, I will provide a Letter of Engagement.  The Letter of Engagement will set forth what work I am agreeing to perform as well as the fees and costs associated with that work.

Petition

A petition with notice will be prepared and served upon the alleged incapacitated person (AIP), a court evaluator and any counsel retained or appointed for the AIP.  Additional notice of the proceeding may also be served upon family members and other that have an interest in the proceedings.

Hearing and Appointment

Petitioner, the court evaluator, and the alleged incapacitated person (if possible), will present evidence in support or against the appointment of a Guardian.  Court determinations are always designed to provide AIPs with the maximum amount of independence while ensuring that their needs are met.  Once the Guardian is appointed my office will assist him/her in carrying out appropriate responsibilities.

Initial Consultation

I provide a free initial consultation for up to 45 minutes to discuss and to evaluate your specific situation, your needs and your goals.

In preparation for our meeting I request that you have the following documents and information:

A.      Completed Intake Form

B.      Previous Wills, Trusts and Advanced Directives (if any)

C.       Copy of Official Identification (drivers’ license, passport, etc.)

Retainer

Following our initial consultation and based upon the information provided, as well as our discussions, I will mail a Letter of Engagement in which I suggest the estate plan that I believe will meet your goals.  The Letter of Engagement will also set forth what work I am agreeing to perform as well as the fees and costs associated with that work.

Editing

Once the Letter of Engagement is returned with the retainer fee I will begin drafting the appropriate documents.  During this stage I may request additional information and documentation.  An initial draft of all documents will be provided to you for your review and for edits and changes to be made prior to the final draft.

Execution

Following your acceptance of the final draft we will schedule a time and place for you to execute your estate planning documents.  It will be necessary for two witnesses to be present when you sign certain documents.  It is recommended that these be individuals that you know but who are not named in any documents.  If none are available my office may be able to secure witnesses for this purpose.

Final Steps

Wills and Advanced Directives (Living Will, Health Care Proxy, Power of Attorney) should be kept in a secure location (but not a safe deposit box) and their location should be shared with the fiduciary named therein and may be shared with named beneficiaries as well.  Copies may also be given to these individuals.

Note: Once the pages of a Last Will and Testament are stapled the staples should never be removed or questions may be raised about tampering. 

An Inter Vivos (Lifetime) Trust must be funded once created for it to be an effective estate planning tool.  You may fund the trust yourself or retain my office to assist you in the endeavor.

Initial Consultation

I provide a free initial consultation for up to 45 minutes to discuss and to evaluate your specific situation, your needs and your goals.

In preparation for our meeting I request that you have the following documents and information if available:

A.      Original Last Will and Testament (if one exists)

B.      Certified Copy of Death Certificate

C.       A list of names and contact information of closest living relatives

If a Will is believed to be in a decedent’s safe deposit box or if the decedent’s home has been sealed for any reason, a court order may be necessary to open or unseal them.

Retainer

Following our initial consultation and based upon the information provided, as well as our discussions, I will provide a Letter of Engagement.  The Letter of Engagement will set forth what work I am agreeing to perform as well as the fees and costs associated with that work.

Petition

Once the Letter of Engagement is returned with the retainer fee, I will work with the named Executor to prepare a petition for Letters Testamentary or with the proposed Administrator to prepare a petition for Letters of Administration if there is no valid Will.  This stage of the process will involve notification of all interested parties in order to have the Court grant appropriate powers to the Executor/Administrator.

Marshaling Assets

Following issuance of Letters Testamentary or Letters of Administration I will assist the Executor or Administrator in carrying out the responsibilities of taking inventory of the estate assets, paying debts and expenses, making distributions and paying estate taxes.

Initial Consultation

I provide a free initial consultation for up to 45 minutes.

In preparation for our meeting I request that you have the following documents and information if available:

A.      If you are the Seller, a copy of the Deed or Proprietary Lease (if co-op) and property survey

B.      If you are the Buyer, a copy of a mortgage approval

C.       The name and contact information of the Real Estate Agent with whom you are dealing

Retainer

Following our initial consultation and based upon the information provided, as well as our discussions, I will provide a Letter of Engagement.  The Letter of Engagement will set forth what work I am agreeing to perform as well as the fees and costs associated with that work.

Steps to the Closing

Sellers can expect to have me:

  • Prepare, review and negotiate the real estate contract,
  • Resolve any issues that may impact the transfer of clear title to the property (transfer of shares with a co-op),
  • Correspond with the buyer’s attorney and real estate agent (and Co-op management, if applicable),
  • Obtain payoff information for any existing property liens
  • Prepare for the closing.

Buyers can expect to have me:

  • Review and negotiate the real estate contract,
  • Identify and assist in clearing issues relating to title and property condition,
  • Correspond with the seller’s attorney, title company and mortgage company (and co-op management, if applicable)
  • Prepare for the closing.

Closing

I will appear and represent you at the closing, make sure your interests are protected and provide you with a Closing Statement detailing all the calculations and documents.

Do you have questions or are you ready to get started?

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