Estate Planning Attorneys in Seattle, Washington

At Byrd Garrett PLLC, we believe it’s never too early to prepare for the future. Our professional Estate Planning attorneys have built up a strong reputation for quality customized Estate Plans that serve residents of Seattle, Washington from all different walks of life. Estate Planning ensures that you, your family, and your assets will be taken care of no matter what happens. Because every family has different financial backgrounds, family dynamics and priorities, our Seattle Estate Planning lawyers are committed to understanding your preferences before the planning process begins. Our attorneys can prepare important legal documents such as Living Trusts, Wills, powers of attorney, and health care directives to ensure that your wishes are put in writing and made official. Additionally, we have experience and advanced knowledge of the Probate process, Trust Administration, Elder Law, nursing home planning, Medicaid planning, GLBT Estate Planning, special needs planning, and all aspects necessary for your Estate Plan.

Probate

If you have experienced the passing of a loved one, you have likely heard of Probate. Probate is a process where state laws govern the inventory and distribution of a deceased individual’s estate. Although Probate tends to have a negative reputation, it can be used to the advantage of an individual preparing an Estate Plan prior to death. Our Seattle Estate Planning attorneys are well-versed in the Probate process and can apply this knowledge and experience to ensure that your estate is distributed as intended while addressing legal matters that may cause conflict, including family disputes, special needs planning, and so on. When you acquire skilled legal counsel, you eliminate conflicts that may arise during the distribution process and better protect your assets as well as your wishes.

Trust Administration

Fortunately, Trust Administration doesn’t require Probate the way Wills do. By taking Probate out of the equation, you might assume that the Trust Administration process becomes significantly less complex. Although it may help, there are still quite a few additional steps that must be taken to acquire the Living Trust you are entitled to. As your Seattle Estate Planning attorney, our job is to sort out all of the unfinished legal matters that the deceased left behind. This includes filing and paying remaining taxes, conducting a full inventory of the deceased individual’s assets, informing creditors and paying off debts.

Will and Living Trust

The biggest difference between a Will and a Living Trust is that a Will requires Probate, while a Living Trust does not. Although they both establish the distribution of property to beneficiaries, Wills can be used to specify last requests and assign guardianship for minor children. A solid Estate Plan would likely include both of these documents; however, it depends solely on your unique situation and preferences. Our Estate Planning attorneys can help you sort out which documentation would be best for your needs and preferences while sorting out the logistics of processing the documents as well. 

Elder Law 

Aside from preparing for the future of your assets and your loved ones, part of the Estate Planning process involved preparing for your own future. Nursing home planning is one of the most important aspects of Elder Law considering the high costs for nursing home care in addition to the high likelihood that you will spend at least one year in these institutions. A Seattle Estate Planning attorney can help you manage these costs while determining your eligibility for federal programs such as Medicaid, which can ease the financial burden of future care. Other special instructions, such as Health Care Directives, Powers of Attorney, Guardianship preferences, and others, can be prepared by your Seattle Elder Law attorney as well.

GLBT Estate Planning

Many members of the GLBT community are still continually fighting for their rights in many aspects. Ensuring the financial security and stability of their loved ones as well as their estate is just one of them. Our Seattle Estate Planning attorneys understand the legal requirements necessary for individuals in GLBT relationships to receive the same rights as those in heterosexual relationships in the event of a disabling illness or death. Our Estate Planning lawyers strive to ensure that members of the GLBT community have an Estate Plan that ensures their loved ones and property are cared for no matter what.

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