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Klenk Law

An Estate Planning Lawyer Allentown, PA Discusses Circumventing Familial Conflict 

Trust Litigation Lawyer Cherry Hill, NJ

When you need the help of an estate planning lawyer Allentown, PA, recommends, contact Klenk Law to see how we can help. Avoiding probate is possible, especially if you ask a probate lawyer in Allentown, Pennsylvania, for help. If you do not want to go through the probate process, it is prudent you take actions that go beyond a will. Utilize several different approaches, such as a living trust or creating a family limited partnership.

If you don’t understand why you would want to avoid the probate process, consider these reasons.

Your Heirs Won’t Have to Go Through the Probate Process.

Our estate planning lawyer Allentown, PA, turns to shares that you can simplify your estate if you choose to place your assets in a trust. In some situations, this can save time and money. Further, if your children live far away, they can manage the process remotely. Also, revocable trusts are not published, so your plan remains private. It may also enable them to focus on healing from any grief they might have.

Your Assets May Be Given to Your Heirs More Quickly

Depending on your situation, a revocable trust may speed up the process. If so, and if your heirs are relying on their inheritance, a quicker process has an advantage. Our estate planning lawyer Allentown, PA, relies on, will tell you that in some situations, the probate process can be slower. If you prefer, there are specific stipulations on the trust, an estate planning lawyer Allentown, PA know, can include.

Avoid Conflict

If you expect conflict between the heirs after your death, a Revocable Trust can be useful. By working with your estate planning lawyer, especially one who is familiar with Will Contests, they can put up roadblocks against frivolous will contests. Litigation can cost tens of thousands of dollars. An estate planning lawyer Allentown, PA, turns to can help you avoid spending money and time on expensive litigation.  

You Can Avoid Public Attention

Probate is public. Any documents submitted to the probate court become a matter of public record. Therefore the public can view what your heirs have inherited. You may desire privacy whether or not there were any disputes. Consider a trust if you value your privacy or have concerns about the public finding out about your estates’ assets and the estate’s value.

Contesting a Will

For an individual to contest a will, they must satisfy specific requirements. If the complaint does not have standing, the probate judge will likely throw it out of court—a costly mistake for the plaintiff. If the plaintiff properly petitions the court, then the judge can invalidate the questionable will. When successful, the judge discards the challenged will. If there are no other wills, then the estate is divided as if the deceased had no will. As a result, the probate court will rule on who should inherit which of the estate’s assets and in what amounts. It is, therefore, critically important for all adults to have a valid will in place. Update your will after significant life events occur. With the assistance of our estate planning lawyer Allentown, Pennsylvania, clients need from Klenk Law; you can better ensure that your loved ones never have any cause to contest your will after you’re gone. 

Types of Will Contests.

If you’re already in a position where you or someone else is considering contesting the will of someone who has passed away, a Philadelphia, PA estate planning lawyer can focus the claim. Here are potential claims:

The testator did not legally sign their will.

  • Pennsylvania state law is very clear about how individuals must sign their last will. Even attorney-drafted wills are subject to challenge. It still may be vulnerable. An estate planning lawyer Allentown, PA accesses for support, can examine the document to determine if it appears to be valid.

The testator was not of sound mind at the time they signed the will. 

  • Though a testator may have signed their will, this does not guarantee that they were of sound mind. Did they understand the contents and directions of the will? The law recognizes that mental or physical illness may confuse. The elderly and ill are subject to manipulation. An experienced estate planning lawyer Allentown, PA trusts, seeks out the proof needed from a doctor’s examination or other sources. We search for evidence that the testator lacked the necessary capacity. Conversely, an attorney may be able to help prove that the contents of a will reflected the deceased’s wishes. 

The testator was unduly influenced. By another party to write their will in such a way that it did not reflect their exact wishes. It’s a sad fact that ill and elderly persons are often taken advantage of to get their assets upon their passing. If you feel that this happened to a loved one, don’t hesitate to speak with an experienced estate planning lawyer Allentown, PA clients access for support.

Get Help From an Estate Planning Lawyer Allentown, PA Recommends Now!

Many people know they need to prepare for the end of their life. Thinking about your own mortality is a hard thing to do, but it’s essential, so you don’t leave your loved ones with a mess after you’re gone.

However, it can be confusing trying to determine which documents you need and which you don’t. Addressing all your needs can become complicated because some estate planning documents have similar names.

What is a will?

Many people are referring to a will when they say they want an estate plan. But what is a will?

Our estate planning lawyer Allentown, PA, knows that the last will is a legal document that allows you the power to say who receives assets upon your death. It also allows you the opportunity to discuss how to deal with liabilities after your death.

This document gives you great control over the distribution of your personal items. For example, if your son enjoys your coin collection or your daughter enjoys your collection of crystal glasses. A will allows you the opportunity to give specific items to specific heirs.

But it’s also essential that you include the full names of the people you want to leave specific items. An estate planning lawyer Allentown, PA, trusts will tell you that merely saying that you want to give an item to your daughter may not be sufficient.

What is a living will?

A living will is another component of a complete estate plan. But it is very different from the last will. A living will does not discuss how to distribute your assets. Instead, a living will spell out what steps you want to be taken, or not, during your end-of-life care. You complete your living will by making certain decisions within the document. To understand these options, contact an estate planning lawyer Allentown; PA residents are reliant upon. Doing this allows doctors and your family to know what you want to happen. They cannot ask you once you are unable to speak for yourself. A living will might be the least pleasant document to discuss with your Philadelphia estate planning lawyer. But it’s also one of the most important.

You need both documents and more.

You need more than just these two documents to have a full estate plan. Visiting Klenk Law will give you the guidance you need to ensure your loved ones don’t inherit a mess. Instead, put your things in order.

By working with a team of experienced estate planning lawyers Allentown, PA residents can count on. You take the guesswork out of your estate plan. You don’t want to leave your heirs with a mess. Speak with someone you can trust. Settling your affairs before you’re gone is a complex and cumbersome process. You shouldn’t trust this to just anyone. You’ve worked hard your entire life – don’t skimp at the end.

Completing your estate plan is a crucial step to take, and you shouldn’t try to handle it alone. You deserve the skilled and trusted advice of our estate planning lawyer Allentown, PA residents trust. We can provide you the guidance you need with the compassion you deserve. 

If You Want to Avoid Probate, You Should Choose a Qualified Estate Litigation Lawyer

Whether you are sure that you want to avoid probate or you would like to explore all of your options, you should speak with an estate planning lawyer Allentown, PA, residents turn to when in need. At Klenk Law, we listen to your needs and utilize helpful estate planning tools. We protect your assets. We strive to minimize costs and meet your objectives. If you would like to talk with an estate planning lawyer Allentown, PA, clients recommend, please call our office now.

Family Discussions and Estate Planning

Although people do not like to think about their mortality, the reality of life is that it will end one day. Our estate planning lawyer Allentown, PA residents respect, shares that this is a primary reason for ensuring that your estate plan is complete. Map out your wishes. Feel comfortable that you have taken care of your family. 

A Fidelity Investments study revealed that many adult children and their parents avoid estate planning discussions. It would help if you discussed retirement finances, elderly care, and will and inheritance issues. But many people delay these matters. The study found four out of 10 families never address the issue.

The Intra-Family Generational Finance Study surveyed parents 55 years or older with an adult child of 30 years or older. The parents had a minimum of $100,000 in investable assets. The participating adult children had a minimum of $10,000 saved in an IRA, 401(k) or other retirement accounts.

When to Talk:

Despite the high number of families who have not broached the subject, 75 percent of participants said it is important to discuss finances. However, an estate planning lawyer Allentown, PA trusts, shares that when these conversations should take place was a source of disagreement among parents and children. Over 60 percent of parents and children disagreed on the timing. Parents think it is better to wait until after they retire, but their adult children want to decide these matters well before their parents’ retirement or medical problems become an issue.

Other discrepancies between the answers given by parents and adult children include:

  • Adult children think their parents worry about finances more than double (56 percent) the amount of time the parents actually worry (23 percent).
  • Parents and their adult children also disagree on who will care for the parent in the event they are no longer to care for themselves. Almost half of the children say they will be the caregiver if their parents become ill, but only six percent of parents expect their children to take care of them.

Can You Disinherit Family Members?

To disinherit someone is to leave them out of your will when they have a reasonable expectation that they would otherwise be included. Disinheriting someone can result in hurt feelings and possibly a challenge to your will.

The law gives you significant latitude to decide who will and will not inherit from you following your death. In most cases, you are not obligated to include any specific person or type of relative in your will. However, there are a few exceptions.

Minor Children

Since minor children have no legal standing and cannot support themselves, they have a right to receive financial support from a deceased parent. Therefore, you cannot put any provisions in your will stating that your minor children are to receive nothing from your estate. If there is money available to support them, they have to receive it.

Of course, it rarely, if ever, happens that parents willfully exclude minor children from their will. What happens more often is that a parent dies with an outdated will that was written before the children were born and so does not mention them by name. This is why frequent revisions and updates to a will are so important. If a parent has an outdated will, it doesn’t mean that the children will receive nothing, but it may mean that they don’t receive as much as they would have if the parent had updated the will.


As with minor children, spouses have special status when it comes to inheritance. Your spouse shares your property and assets, such as the home you live in together, and you can’t put provisions in your will depriving your spouse of what he or she is entitled to. Your spouse then has the option of having the will waived, in which case your state’s intestacy laws will apply and your spouse will receive whatever he or she is entitled to under those statutes.

Adult Children

If your children are old enough to have legal standing and become self-supporting, you are not required to include them in your will. However, you should be aware that disinheriting them is likely to cause hurt feelings and resentment in your disinherited children toward those who are not, especially if the language you use to disinherit them is particularly harsh. On the other hand, you do not want to just leave out the name(s) of the disinherited child or children, or the judge may consider it an accidental oversight and supersede your wishes.

One of our attorneys can help you word your will in a way that adequately reflects your wishes and is resistant to legal challenges. Schedule a consultation by contacting our office.

Our estate planning lawyer Allentown, PA, residents, knows that as complicated as the topic may be, it is essential for families to plan ahead before the time comes. If you and your family have had difficulties making plans for the future, consider contacting an estate planning lawyer Allentown, PA relies on. We can help guide you through planning. We can help you decide which options are the ones that are the best for you.

Contact Klenk Law for Help

If you are concerned with the future of your estate and what could happen to those inherited funds, contact an experienced estate planning lawyer at Klenk Law. Find out what kinds of options you may have.

Our estate planning lawyer Allentown, PA, trusts can discuss all the different estate planning tools. We can help you make sure your family is taken care of when you are no longer here. In addition to wills, many of our clients also establish one or more of the many types of trusts. Several trust options are available under state and federal laws. We can also show you how your estate can avoid probate.

Call our experienced estate planning lawyer Allentown, PA can count on from Klenk Law to find out how we can help.

Estate Planning Lawyer Allentown, PA

Planning for your future is more than planning for your retirement, which is why reaching out to our Allentown, PA estate planning lawyer from Klenk Law can be an excellent place to start. Our team can assist with answering your questions and developing an estate plan that outlines your wishes and protects your legacy. When mapping out your estate plan, it’s a good idea to reach out to our team for the services you deserve. 

What should I bring to the first meeting with my lawyer? 

When you first schedule an appointment with us, our firm will advise on bringing the proper documents. To ensure the process moves as smoothly and efficiently as possible, first gather information about your estate and assets. It may be helpful to bring the following: a list of questions to help you stay on track, information about retirement accounts, financial statements, property documents, marital agreements, and your list of beneficiaries.   

What elements make up an estate plan? 

An estate plan makes up several key documents and outlines your plans for the future. This includes how assets will be distributed; plans should you be unable to make decisions on your own, and more. An estate planning attorney in Allentown, Pennsylvania, can assist with putting together crucial documents that might include: the last will and testament, trusts, medical directives, beneficiary designations, and power of attorney. 

How long will it take to solidify my estate plan?

Most estate plans can come together rather quickly. However, this will depend upon how long it takes you to gather the necessary information, appoint beneficiaries, and take an inventory of your estate. Additionally, for larger estates, the process can take much longer. On average, the typical estate plan can be completed anywhere from a couple of weeks to a few months. 

What is the best way to identify an executor? Should there be a backup?

One of the most critical decisions you will have to make during the estate planning process is identifying a person who will act as the estate executor when the time comes. When making this decision, you will want to choose someone you can trust to carry out your wishes as intended. Always be sure to identify an alternate executor and have conversations with those you are considering to make sure they are up for the task. 

Why is it important to identify beneficiaries? 

Appointing beneficiaries by naming them on your accounts is critical, and in many situations, you can do it without a lawyer’s help. While beneficiaries will be named throughout the will and estate plan, it’s essential to name your beneficiaries on bank accounts and retirement accounts. By doing so, these assets may be able to circumvent probate. Additionally, remember to identify backup beneficiaries should your original beneficiary not be available. 

Klenk Law knows that the act of developing an estate plan may be shelved for another day. However, when you reach out to our firm, we can guide you through the process from start to finish. Developing an estate plan doesn’t have to be overwhelming or complicated, especially when you enlist a professional from our team. Get started today by scheduling your first appointment with our Allentown, Pennsylvania estate planning lawyer. 


What Our clients are saying

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Klenk Law is an exceptional practice. Their fine lawyers and staff team up to produce excellent results for their clients. They excel at explaining the often cryptic laws and policies that govern estate planning right down to the complexities of the various "trust" frameworks. Peter himself manages each client together with his great team, and he has a rare quality to be both a walking encyclopedia of planning minutia and also one of the most likable lawyers I have ever had the pleasure of dealing with. He is truly generous in intellect and in his personal approach to getting the "big picture" for complex family structures. I trust him implicitly to help me make the right choices for the future. In short, Klenk Law is a gem of a firm.

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Anne W.

I saw four lawyers and was told by all of them; I should just forget contesting my mother's will. I knew what happened, but it is very hard to prove undue influence. I contacted the Law Offices of Peter L. Klenk & Associates. Attorney Amanda DiChello took my case. They were very honest and upfront about what would be involved trying to prove what I knew was true. Attorney DiChello may be young but she is extremely knowledgeable and skilled. She listened and understood what I conveyed to her. She knew exactly what information to use and crafted an outstanding interrogatory and many powerful depositions. Attorney DiChello understood the various emotional feelings this case created for my family and me; she was always there for us with a kind and encouraging word. We went to trial. The amount of work which she and her Paralegal did for the trial was incredible. They both knew my case inside and out! Attorney DiChello's powerful interrogative and thinking skills produced a positive outcome. Attorney DiChello did what other seasoned lawyers said was impossible!

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Like another reviewer, I contacted Peter through his website using the free consultation link, for a question regarding PA inheritance taxes. The question was quite technical and difficult to explain, and the answer was nowhere to be found on the web. Peter grasped precisely what I was asking, and provided a clear, helpful response (with a touch of humor) the very next day.

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Albert A.

You & your staff are the best thank you for everything.

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Anita R.

Peter came highly recommended by a close friend to do our estate planning. We have been putting off for years. He is knowledgeable, professional and easy to work with.

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