Power of Attorney
Bakes Law, LLC specializes in the following trusts and estates matters:
Trusts are estate-planning tools that can replace or supplement wills, as well as help manage property during life. A trust manages the distribution of a person's property by transferring its benefits and obligations to different people. There are many reasons to create a trust, making this property distribution technique a popular choice for many people when creating an estate plan.
The basics of trust creation are fairly simple. To create a trust, the property owner (called the "grantor") transfers legal ownership to a person or institution (called the "trustee") to manage that property for the benefit of another person (called the "beneficiary"). The trustee often receives compensation for his or her management role. Trusts create a "fiduciary" relationship running from the trustee to the beneficiary, meaning that the trustee must act solely in the best interests of the beneficiary when dealing with the trust property. The grantor may act as the trustee himself or herself, and retain ownership instead of transferring the property, but he or she still must act in a fiduciary capacity. A grantor may also name himself or herself as one of the beneficiaries of the trust. In any trust arrangement, however, the trust cannot become effective until the grantor transfers the property to the trustee.
After death, a successor Trustee takes over for the client and holds the assets for the successor beneficiaries. A trust is generally very detailed and provides the Trustee with instructions on what to do upon the Client's death or disability so, if drafted properly and funded at death, there is typically no reason to go through the probate process.
Trusts are useful for several purposes. Some of the trusts we can help you create include:
Estate Planning: While it may be the last thing you want to think about, estate planning is an important step you can take to protect the interests of your family. A well prepared estate plan will help you ensure your wishes are carried out and your loved ones are taken care of once you're gone. If you pass away without a plan in place, your family members may be left to sort out the mess in court. To give you a better idea of what estate planning entails, schedule a free consultation with Bakes Law, LLC, to receive detailed information on wills, trusts, health care directives, probate, and estate administration.
Power of Attorney: This a legal document by which you, the principal, give certain powers to someone else. This person becomes your attorney-in-fact, also known as your agent, authorized to act for you, in your place. A "power of attorney" document specifies exactly what powers you give to your attorney-in-fact. You can limit your attorney-in-fact to very limited powers. For example, if you are on an overseas trip and need something signed, you can give your attorney-in-fact the power to sign a paper in your absence.
On the other hand, you can appoint someone to have "general durable powers of attorney", which means that you can give your attorney-in-fact the power to do almost anything you could do. For example, if you know that you are likely to become mentally incapacitated in the future (i.e. a diagnosis of dementia or Alzheimer's,) you may designate someone to have a durable power of attorney--that person would be able to make all decisions for you, even if you, yourself, are not mentally capable to give your attorney-in-fact specific instructions.
Probate Services: Have you lost a loved one and are facing the difficult task of handling his or her estate? At Bakes Law, LLC, we are available to help you fulfill your duties as the estate administrator. We can guide you through the legal procedures involved in the decedent's estate, including the administration of assets.