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Do You Need A Will?

Do I need a WillIf you don’t have a will, do you know what will happen when you die?

Folks fail to realize the consequences of not having a will—for example, if you don’t have a will, you lose the right to choose who will serve as executor (the person in charge of the estate). In the absence of a will, the “administrator” appointed by the court needs to be bonded, which can cost hundreds or even thousands of dollars. With a will, you can have a clause that waives the bond requirement.

A place for information on this topic is your area’s probate clerk whose office is typically located in the county’s courthouse. Plus, many good introductory brochures can be found online on their website. This information might be enough to convince you how important it is to have a will.

Another possible concern you may have is that of keeping your personal and financial matters private. If so, creating a trust to dispose of our assets is the better plan. Remember that a will is a public document. While most wills don’t have specific asset information, the will itself is open to the public, and anyone can obtain a copy. A trust is always private unless there is a court action involving the trust. The trust agreement isn’t automatically a public record, even in that case.

If you create a trust with the help of a qualified trust planning law firm such as ours, we’ll assist you with the transfer of assets to a trust thereby allowing the trust controls what happens to those assets upon your incapacity and death.

These are some good options to discuss at a complimentary consultation. No matter what you decide, it’s better to have a plan in place. Otherwise, ignoring these issues may mean costly and stressful family disputes, which can be avoided with proper planning.

Reference: NJ 101.5 (November 1, 2016) “Talking to your parents about a will”

 

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We've been putting together as many resources as possible so that we can continue to help:

  • If you’re a current client with a signing appointment or a prospective client with a consultation and would prefer that meeting take place in your own home, we can accomplish that with a little bit of pre-planning on our part and with the addition of a laptop, smartphone, tablet or other computer in your home to facilitate this virtual meeting. For those of you that need to sign legal documents, that too can be accomplished with the use of a webcam (FaceTime etc.), so that we can witness and electronically notarize all of your important legal documents.
  • We launched the rollout of our on-demand webinar early so that new clients and our allied professionals can view the important component parts of ‘an estate plan that works’ at their convenience.  That is available on our website.
  • Live video workshops will be produced as quickly as possible and certainly ahead of our previous schedule; we will keep you posted as these events become available. Given the ‘boutique’ nature of the firm, we rarely have more than ten people in our office including team members at any one time. During this period of ‘social distancing,’ we promise to have no more than 8 people at any time.   This allows us to comply with the Governor’s directive to limit in-person gatherings.
  • The best way to communicate with us is still by phone during regular office hours of 8:30 to 5:00, Monday through Friday, or, you can email any of our team members (that is, their first name followed by @zarembalaw.com).  We will respond to these emails as quickly as possible.
  • Please continue to follow the directives of our local, state, and federal agencies. For your health and in consideration of our team who is assisting you, if you’ve scheduled an office appointment or planned to drop off paperwork and are experiencing a fever, dry cough, or shortness of breath, please contact your primary care doctor for guidance and then our office to reschedule.

Thank you, Walt and the Zaremba Team

Coronavirus/Covid-19
Update to our Process

The unprecedented coronavirus pandemic has taken our entire country by surprise. We understand how difficult this time is for America’s businesses and families.  However, we believe it is vitally important that we make every effort possible to continue to offer solutions that avoid disrupting our important partnership with you, your family and friends.  As you know, estate planning is not something that should wait for a more convenient time, therefore the opportunity to address your important goals both during and after this crisis should not wait.  To that end, we have added the option of a ‘virtual consultation’ to our office process.  You will now have a choice of either meeting with us in our office or in the comfort of your own home.