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When putting together your estate plan, an estate planning lawyer in Allentown, PA will work with you to also draft a will that specifies how you want your estate to be distributed. This process can sometimes feel intimidating but understanding the process can help you feel more comfortable about the decisions you are making.

Estate Planning Lawyer Allentown, PAWhat is the purpose of a will in an estate plan?

Although you may employ other estate planning tools to determine which of your assets go to heirs, such as a living trust, there may still be some items that are not addressed in any of these other documents. A will ensure that you have the final say in how these items and/or assets will be distributed. You will also appoint someone as the executor of your estate who will also ensure that your wishes are met.

If you have minor children, the most critical item that may be contained in your will is who you want to be appointed as your child’s legal guardian. As an Allentown, PA estate planning lawyer can explain, without a will, Pennsylvania intestacy laws will determine how your estate will be distributed and that could end up being totally different than what your wishes would have been.

What must my will contain in order to make sure it is legally valid?

Under the law, there are certain individuals who may have legal standing to contest a decedent’s will. While the estate is being probated, they can file their objection to the will, citing the reason or reasons why they think the will is invalid.

In order for a will to be considered valid, the person who writes the will be at least 18 years of age and they must be of sound mind. Pennsylvania law says that a sound mind means the person writing the will is mentally competent and they fully understand what assets and property they own and who they are leaving these

Possessing a sound mind means that the testator is mentally competent and fully understands what assets and property they own and to who they are conveying these assets and property.

In addition to the above requirements, the will must have also have the person’s signature on the bottom. There must also be a witness to that person’s signature. There are also a number of requirements if the person who is writing the will becomes ill and is unable to but does instruct another person to do so for them.

While handwritten wills are allowed under Pennsylvania law, they are discouraged because of the incidents of errors and misperceived intentions of the person writing the will.

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If you would like to learn more about putting together an estate plan or your plan needs updating, contact an estate planning lawyer Allentown, PA from Klenk Law, schedule an appointment, and find out how we can help.

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Peter provided outstanding advice and preparation of a will and trusts.

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Peter is excellent. I had a very complicated situation with my parents' estate planning and potential Medicaid needs. Peter was very knowledgeable in estate planning matters, able to define the best solution for the situation. Additionally, he was congenial and able to communicate effectively to my senior citizen parents the benefits of estate planning. He earned my trust, and more importantly, my parents' trust in a 45 mins consultation period. Highly recommend Peter. He is very easy to work with.

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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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