Minneapolis Will Attorneys
Estate Planning with Wills in Minneapolis, St. Paul, and Throughout Minnesota
Guttman Law is a leading estate planning law firm serving clients throughout Minnesota. Our team of experienced estate planning attorneys regularly advise individuals and families in St. Paul, Minneapolis, and the surrounding communities about wills and other important estate planning tools. When you consult with us, we will take the time to learn about your unique circumstances, listen to your concerns, review your finances, and create an estate planning solution that is tailored to your needs.
Well-versed in the applicable probate, trust, and estate laws, we are widely respected for providing each client with compassionate, efficient representation. We will work to help you make informed decisions about your assets, loved ones, and future.
Contact our office today to start working on your will or estate plan.
Building a Comprehensive Estate Plan Starts with a Will
While many are aware of the importance of a will, a recent study found that nearly 60% of Americans do not have a will. We often hear from Minnesotans that estate planning can feel overwhelming or fatalistic. However, creating a will or other estate planning documents can and should be an empowering and proactive process that helps to protect you and your loved ones.
While contemplating our fate is never easy, a well-designed will can accomplish more than making sure the right people receive your assets, such as:
- Name Guardians for Minor Children. A will gives you the opportunity to name someone to to care for your children if you become incapacitated or pass away or both you and the other parent die simultaneously in an accident.
- Establish Trusts. If a beneficiary is a minor child, a will can establish a testamentary trust that names a trustee to manage the assets for the benefit of your child until he or she reaches a certain age and has the maturity to manage it.
In addition, a will allows you to designate a personal representative to carry out your wishes. This individual will have a number of specified duties, the most important being properly managing and distributing the estate assets. While it is common to select a spouse, an adult child, or other close relatives as the personal representative, they must be capable and trustworthy above all.
What Happens if I Don’t Have a Will?
Without a will, the court will appoint a personal representative to manage your estate according to the intestacy laws of Minnesota. This means the wrong people may end up settling your estate, inheriting your assets, or even raising your children. No one wants the court to decide on a guardian for their children or have their children raised by a guardian who does not share your values.
Moreover, disputes may arise among heirs and family members, which can only add to their grief after your passing. Because of these and other risks, it is crucial to have a will. By working with an experienced attorney, you will have comfort knowing you and your loved ones will be protected.
It Is Important To Speak with an Experienced Estate Planning Attorney
While the Internet is a great place to begin your research into wills and other estate planning tools, the best way to determine the right solution for your needs is to speak with an estate planning attorney. Working with a capable lawyer that focuses on estate planning can help you determine the best way to accomplish your goals, avoid costly mistakes, and lessen the potential of a will contest (a legal challenge brought by a beneficiary or other interested party).
At Guttman Law, we have extensive experience with drafting wills and other essential estate planning documents. At the same time, planning your estate involves more than merely preparing legal papers. Knowing that no two estates are alike, we will provide you with individualized attention and help you create a will that best suits your needs.
What Else You Need to Know About Wills in Minnesota
The first thing to know is that a will must go through probate, the legal process through which the assets are distributed. Depending on the size of the estate, probate can be a time-consuming and aggravating process. It is also a public proceeding that can expose the details of your distribution plan to public scrutiny. For this reason, we often recommend that clients consider establishing trusts to achieve their estate planning objectives. A properly designed and funded trust will avoid probate, keep the details of the estate private, and help to reduce or eliminate estate taxes.
A properly designed estate plan goes beyond having a will and includes planning for incapacity. This involves creating a power of attorney and an advance healthcare directive to help protect your assets and well-being if you suffer from an incapacitating injury or illness and cannot speak for yourself.
Finally, a will is not set in stone. You can modify the distribution plan during your lifetime to reflect the changes that may occur, such as getting married, having children, acquiring property, or retiring. At Guttman Law, we are available to provide ongoing counsel and recommend reviewing your estate plan on a regular basis.
Talk to a Guttman Law Attorney About Your Will
The best way to protect your assets and loved ones is to create an estate plan with the guidance of an experienced estate planning attorney. Our team at Guttman Law is happy to assist you with beginning your estate planning journey or assess your existing will or estate plan. We can help you take the first step today so that you are prepared for tomorrow.
Please contact our office to schedule a consultation.