Many of our clients know what estate planning is but often ask, “What is Elder Law?” Elder Law is defined by you, the client. In other words, we handle a whole range of issues specifically addressing your specific needs and use a variety of tools and techniques to meet them. Our experience and mastery of the law can help you and your family deal with issues such as the cost of nursing home care, health care, taxes, probate or special family situations. The tools we use on your behalf include long-term care planning, estate planning, wealth preservation, incapacity planning, and values-based planning.
If you are raising a child with a physical or developmental disability, we can help you cope with the many legal, financial, social and medical issues involved. We have the experience and knowledge of the law to help you obtain the assistance you need now, and ensure your special needs child will be cared for according to your wishes when you are no longer able to serve as primary caregiver.
Many people think estate planning is only for the extraordinarily wealthy, the “rich and famous” people you see on television or read about in the newspaper. The fact is that almost every family can benefit from having its own estate plan. Without one, the state of Georgia will control how your assets are distributed after you pass away. Of course, the government is not concerned about minimizing your taxes, cutting estate settlement costs or making sure your wishes are carried out. Having a plan of your own also allows you to control who can make healthcare and financial decisions if you become incapacitated or in an end-of-life situation.
Perhaps you have heard the word “probate” but are not sure what it is? Probate is the court-supervised process of distributing assets after a person has died. It is frustrating, time-consuming, open to the public, and can be quite expensive. Many clients ask us how long the probate process takes. While every estate is unique, the answer typically depends on the size of the estate, its complexity, and the schedule of the probate court. Most Georgia probates take about six months, but some go on for considerably longer.