When life events happen, they usually come fast and without warning. Your first child may be growing by leaps and bounds every day, and you’re considering buying a new home for your family’s security. On the other hand, perhaps you made an error in judgment that could seriously jeopardize your future—or your loved one has just been injured or incapacitated in an accident you never saw coming.
At Raymond C. Barry & Associates, PLLC, we can give you the guidance you need to make sound legal decisions, protecting you and your loved ones for years to come. No matter which of our legal services you require, we always take the time to explain your options in a way you can understand, and help you take the actions that will be of the best benefit to you and your family.
Our Oakland County Estate Planning Services Take the Worry Out of Your Future
Every person in Michigan who owns a home, has children, and has accumulated assets needs an estate plan. Even the simple act of creating a will can go a long way toward ensuring that your end-of-life wishes are respected, but a basic estate plan should consist of at least three documents: a will, a revocable living trust, and durable power of attorney.
When you come to us for estate planning help, we always consider your needs and concerns, answering any questions you may have before creating the estate plan that is right for you. When properly drafted and executed, your estate plan can:
- Ensure that your will is clear, legal, and cannot be easily contested.
- Allow a surviving spouse to live in the manner he or she is accustomed to.
- Appoint a family member as executor of your estate.
- Outline your wishes for future health care (via healthcare proxies) if you are incapacitated.
- Assign a trusted person (via power of attorney) to handle your finances if you are incapacitated.
- Establish a Lady Bird deed to give you control over your assets while maintaining public healthcare eligibility.
- Establish revocable and irrevocable trusts to protect your wealth.
- Minimizing your tax liabilities, including gift tax, death tax, and federal estate tax.
- Prevent creditors from collecting assets as payment for your debts.
- Allow your home and assets to pass to your beneficiaries without going through probate.
- Appoint a guardian to care for your minor children.
- Protect children and family members with special needs.
Too often, family members will pass away without having the opportunity to get their affairs in order. If a person dies without a will or before creating a trust, his or her surviving spouse will be forced to enter a legal process called probate. During probate, a deceased person’s property is held by a local court, and is not passed on to beneficiaries until all outstanding debts and taxes have been paid using funds and assets held in probate.
Family members are often completely lost and overwhelmed by the probate process, and do not know what to do in order to close the estate and gain control over their loved one’s property. We help people who are struggling after a death resolve many probate issues, including:
- Contesting a will or determining the validity of a will.
- Assigning a family member to perform as executor of the estate.
- Performing probate administration to ensure distribution of assets to heirs.
- Resolving financial commitments of the estate, such as taxes, debts, and loan collateral.
- Helping relatives petition for guardianship of minor or special-needs children.
- Re-titling property in a beneficiary’s name to transfer ownership of the assets.
- Legally closing the deceased’s estate.
- Representing clients in probate court in estate litigation cases.
Attorney Raymond Barry has practiced criminal law for twenty years, six of which were spent as an assistant prosecuting attorney. His established background in both criminal defense and prosecution allow him unique insight into criminal trials. He has been able to help many first-time offenders present their cases to a judge, for a variety of infractions, including drinking offenses, traffic violations, embezzlement, fraud, shoplifting, theft, felony offenses, and various misdemeanor crimes.
Contact a Milford Attorney Who Will Never Make You Wait for Legal Help
Raymond C. Barry & Associates, PLLC, was created to provide people with the information they need to make the most difficult decisions in their lives. We pride ourselves on building relationships with our clients and explaining everything you need to know in simple, non-legal terms. We always respond to calls quickly, and are happy to meet clients at their homes if it is difficult for them to meet us in our office. Get the advice you need before making the big decisions! Contact our offices in Milford, Michigan, today for straightforward legal advice you can use.