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North Port Wills and Trusts Lawyers

Port Charlotte Special Needs Trusts Attorneys

If your loved one in Florida has died without leaving a will, his or her estate, including all property, may be tied up by court processes longer — but the estate can still be settled through Florida's intestate laws. For example, sons and daughters will have to prove that they are children of the deceased person, which means another "hoop to jump through" before the estate is settled.

On the other hand, if your loved one has died in Florida with a will, there are probably clearly written designations of beneficiaries of real estate, vehicles, bank accounts, life insurance and other property. If there are young or disabled children, the will probably names guardians for them.

In cases involving multiple marriages and blended families, a properly drafted will is especially important. Only through proper planning can the interests of the surviving spouse, minor children and adult children of prior marriages be reconciled and protected.

The time to prepare a will is long before you need it. Contact us today at 941-257-4881 or 888-513-6880.

When a family member dies, however, probate may be necessary whether or not there is a valid will. In either case, you are well advised to seek an experienced lawyer to help you write a will or to facilitate administration of the estate of the deceased. Among other things, the lawyer will want to examine life insurance policy beneficiary designations as well as any existing prenuptial agreement and determine whether these are in agreement with the will.

Mellor, Grissinger & Backo, LLP has more than 30 years' experience in the North Port area handling all facets and phases of estate planning and probate — including the preparation and administration of trusts.

Trusts have become increasingly popular as the preferred method by which our clients carry out their estate planning objectives. Many trusts are created through a will, to become effective only after the client's death, and perhaps only in certain circumstances. Trusts are also created by separate trust instruments (such as the typical revocable inter vivos trust, or "living trust"). Regardless of the method of trust creation, the range of possible uses and purposes of a trust is virtually unlimited. As examples, our clients have often asked us to assist them in creating trusts to meet specific needs and goals, such as the following:

  • Special needs trusts — to protect the eligibility of disabled adult beneficiaries to receive public benefits and services
  • Spendthrift trusts — to protect the financial security of beneficiaries who may be vulnerable to exploitation or lack of judgment
  • Charitable remainder trusts — to gain valuable tax benefits through philanthropic giving, while providing lifetime income for a spouse or other family members

A trust allows someone while still living the opportunity to structure how wealth will be held and managed during the person's lifetime, if he or she becomes incapacitated, or after death. Often a family member is a preferred trustee, but we can offer advice and recommendations as to when an outside professional fiduciary may be the best choice for trustee.

At Mellor, Grissinger & Backo, LLP, clients seeking assistance with wills or probate are reassured by our attorneys' board certification and long-held reputation for integrity in the North Port area community. We handle other estate planning documents as well, including powers of attorney and advance health care directives.

Contact a North Port Wills and Trusts Attorney Today

Contact us online or by phone at 941-257-4881 or 888-513-6880 to learn how our law firm can help you prepare a will or a trust according to your wishes. You are advised to have an out-of-state will reviewed in Florida if you have moved here. We can advise you efficiently and help you determine which other estate planning tools you may need.

Mellor, Grissinger & Backo, LLP of North Port serves clients from throughout surrounding Southwest Florida counties, Sarasota County, Lee County, Charlotte County and DeSoto County, including the communities of North Port, Venice, Port Charlotte, North Port Charlotte, Punta Gorda, Arcadia, Englewood, Rotonda, Boca Grande and Gasparilla Island.