Estate Planning For Pets

Our pets are almost like children for most of us. So, when creating an estate plan, I always ask if my client has a pet and if yes, then whether the client has thought about what will happen with their pet or pets if something unexpected were to happen.  Almost without exception, the answer is “I hadn’t really thought of that!”  And when we do talk about it, the answers vary wildly.  Sometimes I get a response like “Well, someone in our family will take the dog – I don’t really care who.” Other times the client is adamant that the pet be cared for in a certain way and by a certain person. I have had clients with a young child insist that the family dog and the child are a package deal – the guardian designated for the child must also agree to have the dog live in the household because the dog is very important to the child.

In some instances, a client will want to create a “pet trust”, whereby a special trust is created to hold money […]

By | April 8th, 2022|0 Comments

Qué hacer con información importante a la hora de planificar herencias o patrimonios

Animo a todos mis clientes de planificación patrimonial a crear un documento que contenga información importante: dónde tiene cuentas bancarias, cajas de seguridad, la información de contacto de su asesor de inversiones, información de seguros y otras cosas que cualquier persona que maneje sus finanzas debería saber. Una de las cosas más difíciles en el manejo de los asuntos financieros de alguien como apoderado o albacea de un patrimonio es saber exactamente con qué se está tratando.

Las notas con un nombre de usuario y una contraseña de cuenta de correo electrónico pueden literalmente ahorrar decenas de horas de trabajo porque muchas personas reciben avisos de bancos y compañías de seguros por correo electrónico.

Animo a mis clientes a informar a las personas clave que han nombrado en su plan patrimonial dónde encontrar este documento, para que cuando llegue el momento, esas personas clave tengan una ventaja inicial en la administración de sus finanzas. Además de crear un plan patrimonial en primer lugar, tener un documento con esta información clave es lo más importante que puede hacer. ¡Y asegúrese de mantenerlo actualizado!

Para obtener más información, visite nuestro sitio web en o llame para una consulta gratuita con uno de nuestros […]

By | March 8th, 2022|0 Comments

What to do with your important information: Estate Planning

I encourage all of my estate planning clients to create a document containing important information – where you have bank accounts, safe deposit boxes, the contact information for your investment advisor, insurance information, and other things that anyone handling your finances should know. One of the most difficult things in managing the financial affairs of someone as a power of attorney or an executor of an estate is knowing exactly what you are dealing with.  Notes with an email account username and password can literally save dozens of hours of work because many people get notices from banks and insurance companies via email.

I encourage my clients to let the key people they’ve named in their estate plan know where to find this document so that when the time comes, those key people have a head start on managing their finances.

Contact Us

Other than creating an estate plan in the first place, having a document with this key information is the most important thing you can do. And be sure to keep it updated! For more information about Estate Planning, visit our website at Or you can call for a free consultation with one of our […]

By | March 8th, 2022|0 Comments

Do I Need a Trust if I Own Out of State Real Estate?

At WM Law, we like to use the KISS principle when it comes to developing estate plans. That is, we like to set up an estate plan in the simplest form that can achieve the goals of our clients.  Consequently, most of the estate plans that I create don’t include a trust.  I have set up plenty of trusts, of course, but I have found that most people don’t actually need trust.  I feel that trusts add unnecessary complexity to an estate plan if they are not needed, plus, even more concerning, they create a false sense of security.  If I can create an estate plan without a trust that still accomplishes the client’s goals, that’s what we do.

The recommendation to forego a trust oftentimes surprises people. One of the most common concerns I hear is that the client owns real estate in another state, oftentimes a vacation home. They have heard that if you own a property in another state, then that property requires a trust.  Sometimes, that is exactly the case, but that is due to the laws of the […]

By | February 3rd, 2022|0 Comments

¿Necesito un fideicomiso si soy dueño de bienes raíces fuera del estado?

En WM Law, nos gusta usar el principio KISS cuando se trata de desarrollar planes patrimoniales. Es decir, nos gusta establecer un plan patrimonial de la forma más sencilla que pueda lograr los objetivos de nuestros clientes. En consecuencia, la mayoría de los planes patrimoniales que realizo no incluyen un fideicomiso. He establecido muchos fideicomisos, por supuesto, pero he descubierto que la mayoría de las personas en realidad no necesitan un fideicomiso. Siento que los fideicomisos agregan una complejidad innecesaria a un plan patrimonial si no son necesarios y, lo que es aún más preocupante, crean una falsa sensación de seguridad. Si puedo crear un plan patrimonial sin un fideicomiso que aún cumpla con los objetivos del cliente, eso es lo que hacemos.

La recomendación de renunciar a un fideicomiso a menudo sorprende a la gente. Una de las preocupaciones más comunes que escucho es que el cliente posee bienes raíces en otro estado, a menudo una casa de vacaciones. Han escuchado que si posee bienes raíces en otro estado, entonces esos bienes inmuebles requieren un fideicomiso. A veces, ese es exactamente el caso, pero eso se debe a las leyes del estado donde se encuentra el inmueble, no solo porque […]

By | February 3rd, 2022|0 Comments

A Little Bit of Preparation Goes a Long Way

No one really likes to think about what will happen when they finally pass away. However, a little bit of planning and preparation can help your family out immensely. One of the ways to make that inevitable day easier on your loved ones is to set up an estate plan. But, estate planning may seem daunting and bring up a lot of questions. What is estate planning exactly? What if I don’t have anything to give to my family? How is my family supposed to know what my final wishes and arrangements are? How will minors in my family be treated? What will happen to my prized collection of Kansas City Chiefs memorabilia? The questions can seem endless. […]

By | November 23rd, 2021|0 Comments

Estate Planning for New Parents or Parents-to-Be

If you have recently become new parents or parents-to-be, the last thing on your mind is probably doing estate planning.  After all, you’re young, probably healthy, and all of your energy is focused on that new baby.  Why in the world should you worry about preparing an estate plan now – that’s something your parents or your parents’ parents have to deal with, right?

In some ways, estate planning is more vital to a young couple than it is to an older couple.  For the first time in your life, you have or soon will have a completely helpless human being who is totally dependent upon you for his or her care.  And what happens if something happens to you or your significant other or both?

Financial Responsibility of New Parents or Parents-to-Be

There are the financial aspects to address as new parents or parents-to-be, such as determining and obtaining an appropriate amount of life insurance.  And saving for that inevitable college education.  That’s something a financial planner can assist you with, and it is equally important.  But, estate planning deals with the legal […]

By | October 15th, 2021|0 Comments

Top Estate Planning Mistake #8: Not Updating Your Estate Plan

Going to have an attorney create an estate plan for you and your family can be hard.  There are psychological barriers, financial barriers, time constraint barriers, and leg work barriers.  Looking at all the things that make it difficult to go from “I really need to get an estate plan in place” to “Look at my shiny new estate plan” I understand why I talk to so many responsible people who have never found the time or motivation to come and talk to me about their estate planning needs.  That being said, I will likely never understand who folks who have succeeded in the original process, fail in the upkeep tasks to ensure that the plan they have created and paid for does what they need it to do.

I can’t tell you how many times I have a conversation where I relay that I am an estate planning attorney, and the other person tells me, “I am so glad I had my estate plan done, it’s such a relief knowing that those things are taken care of”.  I hear those words and I am instantly overtaken with conflict.  On the one hand, I want to tell them that they have […]

By | July 22nd, 2016|0 Comments

Top Estate Planning Mistake #9: Putting your child’s name on the deed

We make mistakes, as people that fact is one of our defining characteristics.  The secret to being successful is:  (1) learning from your mistakes to ensure you don’t make the same one twice, and (2) learning from other people’s mistakes so you don’t have to make the same one once.  Over the next few weeks, we will be looking at the top 10 mistakes that people make with estate planning in the hopes that we can support each other to learn from the mistakes of others, so they stay ONLY the mistakes of others.

Top Estate Planning Mistake #9:  Putting your child’s name on the deed

Land is a strange thing in the eyes of the law.  Really, all property in the world can be classified into two groups:  (1) Real estate, and (2) everything else in the world.  Because land is different, a lot of us feel a special connection with our real estate and we want to make sure that the “family home” stays in the family.  Even folks who don’t do any other types of estate planning at all will often try to do something to provide for the way any real estate they own should pass.

Many times, I […]

By | June 21st, 2016|0 Comments