Comprehensive Estate Planning Guidance in Cape Coral and Naples
Thinking about what will happen if you get sick or pass away is not a pleasant exercise, but you deserve to feel confident in knowing your final wishes will be honored. With a robust estate plan in place, you take control of your future and get invaluable peace of mind.
Building and updating your estate plan becomes easier when you have help from compassionate legal advocates who understand your goals. Our team at Lusk, Drasites & Tolisano has been helping clients throughout our local communities protect the things most important to them for over 40 years. No matter the complexity of your needs, our Fort Myers estate planning lawyers can help you implement solutions that provide safety and security. We are well-versed in a variety of estate planning tools and will leverage our vast knowledge to help you make decisions you feel great about.
It is never too early to start thinking about your estate plan, so call (239) 908-4930 or contact us online to schedule an initial consultation. Se habla español.
Why Do I Need an Estate Plan?
If you are young and in good health, you may believe an estate plan is unnecessary. You may also wish to avoid having difficult conversations that are inherent to estate planning and necessary to protect your property and loved ones.
No matter your circumstances, if you are an adult, you should have an estate plan, even if you have a relatively small estate. No one can predict the future, so no one can be sure when estate planning documents will become necessary. You do not want to be in a situation where you are suddenly incapacitated and have no way to dictate who should manage your affairs or the types of care you wish to receive.
It is worth emphasizing what an estate plan can accomplish, as these documents give you control over:
- Who gets your property after you pass away
- Who makes decisions on your behalf if you become incapacitated
- The medical care you will receive if you cannot communicate
- And much, much more
Should you pass away without an estate plan, you will get no say in who will care for your minor children or who will inherit your assets. Under Florida’s intestacy laws, your most immediate surviving relatives will typically get your property, regardless of any preferences you may have had.
Estate planning requires proactive action, and you should not wait to get started. Our Fort Myers estate planning attorneys can review your objectives and circumstances and recommend the types of tools you should consider.
Our Estate Planning Services
Lusk, Drasites & Tolisano is ready to support estates of all sizes and complexities. Whether you need help drafting a simple will or advice on creating an irrevocable trust, we can provide tailored guidance and ensure all documents are valid and enforceable.
Our firm’s estate planning services include assistance with:
- Asset Protection and Wealth Preservation. If you have an especially large estate, we can help you take steps to minimize the impact of federal estate taxes and preserve assets for future generations. We can also help you use estate planning tools to achieve asset protection and protect property from creditors.
- Guardianships. A guardian is a court-appointed adult who makes personal and/or financial decisions on behalf of a minor or an adult who is no longer able to care for themselves. We can help you navigate the complex process of seeking a guardianship.
- Health Care Surrogacy. This document allows you to appoint someone to have access to your medical records and make decisions about treatment should you become unable to communicate.
- Medicaid Planning. Many people rely on Medicaid benefits to afford long-term care, but qualifying for and being accepted into the program can be extremely difficult without proactive planning and legal assistance. We can help use estate planning tools to ensure you or a loved one qualifies for benefits and avoids doing anything that would jeopardize eligibility.
- Powers of Attorney. When you make someone your power of attorney, you give them permission to act on your behalf in a capacity you specify. Powers of attorney can be set up to only trigger when you become incapacitated.
- Probate. Probate is the legal process through which an estate is closed after someone passes away. It is known for being expensive and arduous, which is why many people make every effort to avoid it through estate planning. Regardless of the level of the decedent’s proactive planning, we can assist personal representatives and other interested parties with all matters of probate.
- Will Contests. Parties with standing have the right to object to a will submitted in probate if they have reason to believe it is invalid for one of several acceptable reasons. Litigation is typically required to resolve the dispute. Our Fort Myers estate planning lawyers represent contestants and personal representatives in these conflicts.
- Wills and Trusts. Your will serves as a foundational piece of your estate plan and allows you to name beneficiaries to your assets, a personal representative to oversee your estate, and a guardian to care for your minor children. Wills are subject to probate, which is why many people instead rely on trusts to facilitate asset distribution. Trusts are more complex financial and legal arrangements that can serve a variety of purposes.
Updating Your Estate Plan
Your estate plan should always reflect your current goals and wishes. These objectives and preferences will inevitably change over time, which is why you must routinely review your estate planning documents and make any necessary changes.
You should consider looking over your estate plan whenever you experience a significant life event, such as:
- A Marriage
- A Divorce
- The Birth or Adoption of a Child
- The Death of a Loved One
- Moving to a New State
- A Substantial Change in Financial Circumstances
- A Substantial Change in Medical Circumstances
You should also promptly address your estate plan if you no longer want to include anyone currently named in a document, such as a beneficiary, trustee, personal representative, or guardian. Even if it feels like nothing has changed, you should still make it a point to evaluate your estate plan every few years.
Making changes to your estate plan requires going through specific legal procedures. Our team will be here for you every step of the way.
If you have questions or concerns about estate planning, do not hesitate to call (239) 908-4930 or contact us online.
No Fees Until We WinWe offer Free Consultations, and work on Contingency Fees for Personal Injury cases. This means we ask for nothing from you until your injury case is concluded.
Prioritizing Your Experience
As a member of our community, we want to put your needs first, far ahead of the bottom line. We treat our clients like people, and never just like cases.
In Practice Since 1982We at Lusk, Drasites & Tolisano have been in practice for 40 years, which means you can count on our skill, experience, and community value to help you through your case.
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