estate planning

It is easy to be lured by advertisements claiming you can save time and money by drafting your own will or trust using do-it-yourself websites, retail software, or fill-in-the-blank will or trust kits from the bookstore. It is unlikely that these alternatives will generate a suitable plan that accomplishes all of your objectives. Only a qualified trusts and estates lawyer can interpret the myriad laws bearing on property rights, wills, probate, and trusts. More important, canned programs and forms cannot provide the wide range of legal advice to assure that the form is correct, that assets passing outside of your will or trust are properly handled, that state law nuances are taken into account, or that relevant tax, legal and personal issues are properly addressed.

On the other hand, you can save time and money by preparing for a meeting with your estate planning lawyer. You can organize your information regarding your assets, liabilities, and title arrangements and think about your feelings regarding providing for various family members. Our attorneys and staff have the experience to handle a wide range of planning challenges and give personal attention to each client’s assets, wishes, and family dynamics to craft a customized plan that fits each unique situation.

If hired, the attorneys have a longer questionnaire for the client to fill out regarding details like account numbers, financial institutions, financial planner's information, etc. that will help generate a customized estate planning process for you and your family. However, it is helpful for you to take with you copies of important documents such as previous wills or trusts, powers of attorney, life insurance policies, employment benefits, and prenuptial agreements and divorce decrees, if they are readily available.

Planning Considerations

For families with simpler, smaller estates, Fergus & Tomanka, PLLC, works hard to provide a complete and versatile plan all at a reasonable fee. This strategy works well for a new, growing family without a lot of assets. A basic will with proper guardianship instructions ensures your children are well taken care of even after your gone. These plans are likely to include most or all of the following: 

  • Drafting a Will for an individual or for a Couple

  • Powers of Attorney

    • Medical Power of Attorney

    • Statutory Power of Attorney

  • Guardianship Declarations

    • Minor Children

    • Disability

  • Advanced Directive

 

For more complex, larger estates, Fergus & Tomanka, PLLC, will help you explore more sophisticated, customizable options, including:

  • Dynasty/lifetime trusts for descendants or surviving spouse

  • Family Trusts for children and/or other descendants

  • Education Trusts

  • Business Trusts

  • Family Business Succession Planning

  • Family limited partnerships, LLCs, S Corp

 

We also work with clients whose circumstances call present special planning challenges, including:

  • Prenuptial/pre-marital property agreements

  • Post-marital property agreements

  • Blended families/second marriages

  • Same sex couples

  • Special needs trusts/planning for disabled or challenged beneficiaries.

  • Planning for the terminally or mentally ill

 

Contact us (HERE) to create a future estate plan, as unique as your family. Have questions? Check out our FAQS below or call our attorneys at (325) 232-8218 to schedule a consultation!

FAQs

This is where the proper planning pays off. We review every detail and maintain an open dialogue with our clients so they can make informed decisions throughout the project.


Once the project has been broken down, it is time to build it up. We start by identifying and addressing the elements that present the greatest risk to the owner. Sometimes they align simply with the highest dollar value in the line item budget – but often, the greatest risks are the line items that have the potential to increase all the other line items. Once identified, H+A meticulously manages each element until it is resolved.
The next step in this process is to determine the most effective project delivery method. The project delivery method is the contractual method that will be used to procure the primary contractor, or contractor(s) to be engaged in the construction. There are a wide variety of methods for procuring a project, and the decision to use the most effective one is of the utmost importance. The primary reason this decision retains such a serious influence on the project is that once the contractor(s) are procured, the owner’s leverage for any further negotiations, either for the contract amount, the contract general conditions, or any additional work moving forward, is severely diminished. Therefore, it is critical to the Owner’s risk that the Prime contract(s) be procured in the most effective way. The best and most effective contract with a contractor may vary depending upon where the greatest risks lie on the project, sometimes budget, schedule, constructability, or any combination of all three. Specific contracts address some concerns better than others.