The Role of an Estate Lawyer: When Do You Need One?

The Role of an Estate Lawyer: When Do You Need One?

Everyone should prepare for the future, no matter their age or situation. As you and your loved ones move through the process of estate planning, there are numerous situations in which you should seek the help of an estate lawyer.

At Verhaeghe Law, our Edmonton estate administration lawyers work with our clients to navigate this complex area of law. At Verhaeghe Law Office, our Edmonton estate lawyers may be able to assist you with various aspects of estate planning. Contact us to go over the specifics of your situation today.

Estate Planning

An estate lawyer can administer a wide range of estate planning initiatives. They can work with you to create a will or build a comprehensive estate plan, ensuring that after you pass away, your assets are handled in accordance with your wishes. They may also be able to help you create trusts and build an estate plan that is tax efficient.

Estate lawyers can also help you prepare a personal directive, which formally names an “agent” to act on your behalf should you become unable to make personal decisions. Estate lawyers can also help you create a power of attorney, where a representative is selected to make your financial decisions should you lose capacity in some way. In addition, estate lawyers may also be able to help you navigate the complexities of guardianship or conservatorship for incapacitated adults or minors.

Estate Administration and Probates

After someone passes away, an estate lawyer can help the executor navigate the sometimes stressful and time-consuming process of estate administration. This may include fiduciary and accounting duties, working with creditors and discharging estate debt, preparing and distributing estate accounts, and much more.

Estate lawyers also provide probate services, which is a legal process that authenticates and validates a will. It affirms that the executor can act on behalf of the estate, and ensures that the will can be carried out as it was written.

If the deceased did not have a will or if the executor is unwilling to fulfill their duty, estate lawyers can create a letter of administration. An official court document that proves that an individual has the authority to execute the estate, the letter may be used as an alternative to probate.

Estate Disputes and Litigation

If there is a disagreement or dispute amongst the heirs or beneficiaries, Edmonton estate litigation lawyers may be called in to help resolve these conflicts. If a dispute cannot be initially resolved, then a lawyer could help you through the formal, legal process of estate litigation.

Following the loss of a loved one, estate litigation may occur when disputes arise about their remaining will. An estate lawyer can provide legal advice to estate trustees and beneficiaries on many different challenges, including will interpretation and disputes, capacity issues, relief claims, and more.

Speak to an Edmonton Estate Lawyer Today

It is important to prepare for whatever the future may hold. With the help of an estate lawyer, you may be able to establish a cohesive plan for the estate and loved ones you may one day leave behind. In turn, estate lawyers also help surviving relatives and friends handle the estate of someone who has passed on.

At Verhaeghe Law Office, our Edmonton estate lawyers assist clients with wills, probates, estate litigation, and more. If you need help creating your estate plan or with other areas of estate law, contact Verhaeghe Law Office today.

** Please note, this article is intended as a general overview on the subject of estate law, and is not intended to be legal advice. If you are seeking legal advice, please consult with an Alberta estate lawyer.

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