ESTATE PLANNING & PROBATE
Personalized Estate Planning Services
It is never too early to begin preparing for the next phase of your life and the passing of your assets on to the next generation. Whether you need to create a will, are interested in putting property into a trust or want to make sure your assets are protected from excessive taxation, we are here to help you meet your goals.
Since 1962, the attorneys of Fisher & Wilsey, P.A., have been providing comprehensive estate planning services to individuals and families in the Tampa-St. Petersburg area of Florida.
Call 727-898-1181 to schedule an initial consultation.
We can help you protect your assets, ensure that your wishes are honored and help you meet your estate plan’s needs.
Working To Protect Your Family And Your Property
If you do not have a proper estate plan in place, you could be placing your property and your loved ones at risk by leaving important decisions up to the government. Without a will or proper estate planning, state statutes dictate how your assets, investments, home and other property will be distributed. This is known as “intestate succession.” One who passes without a will or proper estate plan is said to have died intestate. The process is not only more expensive than having proper estate planning in place but can also take longer to complete and may not result in your assets passing as you wish. If you are a Florida resident, you must create an estate plan or have estate planning in place that is valid under Florida law to avoid the pit falls of intestate succession.
But a proper estate plan is necessary not only to take care of your assets, but also to make sure you know who will making financial and health care decisions for you if you became incapacitated. Our estate planning attorneys can prepare the necessary documents and estate plan, so you have control. In addition to a will, all estate plans in Florida should also include the following documents: Durable Power of Attorney, Designation of Healthcare Surrogate, Preneed Guardian, Letter of Instruction, and sometimes a Trust.
The Durable Power of Attorney (DPOA) is an estate planning document that appoints someone you trust to handle your finances on your behalf if you incapacitated or otherwise unable to make financial decision on your own. Our St. Pete estate planning attorneys can help you create a Durable Power of Attorney so that you remain in control even if you are unable to make decisions yourself.
The Designation of Healthcare Surrogate is an estate planning document that appoints someone you trust to make healthcare decision on your behalf in the event you become unable to make such decisions on your own. Our Tampa Bay estate planning attorneys can draft the necessary documents for you to designate your trusted healthcare surrogate.
Like dying intestate, without an estate planning document called the Preneed Guardian, the decision of who would be your guardian if you became incapacitated would be up to the government. In this case a judge. By scheduling a meeting with our estate planning attorneys, you can have peace of mind that you have chosen who would be your guardian by signing a Preneed Guarding document.
The Letter of Instruction is a document that sets out your final wishes as to your funeral arrangements. Although not legally binding, the Letter of Instruction can help give direction to your Personal Representative or Executor when preparing your arrangements.
Finally, in addition to the various estate planning documents mentioned above, many individuals and families find themselves in need of a Trust. A Trust is a document, created by the Settlor (creator of the Trust), that designates a Trustee and Beneficiaries. To be valid, a trust must be funded with property which can consist of money, investments, real property, or personal property. Once funded, the Trustee has a fiduciary duty to administer the trust in accordance with the Settlor’s wishes. Like a Will, a Trust can be used to effectively distributes one’s assets after death. But, to do so, one must meet certain formalities required under Florida law. To make sure you create a valid Trust, trust one of our estate planning attorneys to guide you through the process and to draft the documents for you.
Call Fisher and Wilsey, P.A. today if you are interested in setting up an estate plan drafted by experienced estate planning attorneys in the Tampa Bay area. Our Estate planning attorneys have been creating estate plans for people in St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Tampa and surrounding areas for more than 60 years.
The Experience You Need To Meet Your Goals
When developing a plan for what will happen after you are gone, we believe that the most important thing is that you are the one who is making all of the crucial decisions. We will work closely with you to create an all-inclusive estate plan, using legal tools such as:
- Life insurance, special needs and other types of trusts
- Powers of attorney
- Living wills and health care directives
- Estate tax planning
- Elder law
For additional information on these topics, please visit our estate planning resource.
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