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Klenk Law

Estate Lawyer Allentown, PAEstate Planning Lawyer Philadelphia, PA

An estate planning lawyer in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania can assist you with your estate planning needs. If you’ve recently lost a loved one, you may be feeling overwhelmed by the thought of the probate process. We can help. The anxiety and stress come at a cost and we can reduce that cost. Talk to an estate planning lawyer in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, at Klenk Law about probate, planning or even about irrevocable trusts. 

On the other hand, an estate dispute might have arisen. Not only are you worried about probate, but now you think that you need estate litigation guidance. We can help. Unlike most firms that focus on one area of estate planning, we have departments that address probate, planning, and estate litigation. Realistically, if you believe an argument or dispute is underway, call us. Furthermore, if you think the estate is vulnerable to something devastating, call a Pennsylvania estate planning lawyer in Philadelphia as soon as possible.  

Our Pennsylvania estate planning lawyers have extensive experience in estate-related matters. Our expertise includes estate planning, probate, will contests, and litigation. If you need an estate planning lawyer, please call Klenk Law promptly. 

Understanding Estate Litigation

Estate litigation can include any number of issues; however, most situations involve at least one of the following:

  • Probate litigation
  • Will contest
  • A long lost family member disputing the estate
  • Trust dispute
  • Negligence or breach of duty
  • Failure to disclose property or assets
  • Fraud
  • Undue influence

For more information, see my article, “Will Contests Explained For Non-Lawyer.”

At Klenk Law, our estate planning lawyers in Philadelphia understand complex family dynamics. We understand disputes evolving from a family death can lead to permanent familial rifts. Family fall outs are all too frequently because there was no estate plan. Or, worse, a poorly planned estate. We work hard to navigate these situations while being mindful of every person’s emotions, as well as our client’s interests. 

It is our goal to resolve the problem amicably and before family members cease their relationship with one another. Permanent family rifts are not what we want to see, and so we will try to offer creative solutions through negotiations, mediation, and family talks. That said, sometimes, these proactive resolution attempts are unsuccessful. If this should happen, the estate litigation matter moves into court. Here, we will act as your legal advocate and represent your needs. It will come down to the decision of a judge on what will happen with the estate.  We will prepare your case, so your voice is heard.

What You Should Do In the Event of an Estate Dispute

Whether you are a named beneficiary, heir, executor, or a trustee, you have the right to bring forth your issue to a Philadelphia, PA estate planning lawyer. Before you do so, or while you wait for your lawyer’s recommendation, you should not:

  • Take any action that seems vengeful
  • Do anything that may be considered violent
  • Hide assets, including property and money
  • Destroy documents
  • Forge documents
  • Do anything without talking with a skilled estate litigation lawyer

Estate litigation is a serious issue that can be costly and time-consuming. Talk to our legal team if you are involved in a dispute regarding a trust, will, guardianship, power of attorney, or any other estate planning document. For a consultation, please call an estate planning lawyer in Philadelphia, PA at Klenk Law immediately.

Why You Need to Update Your Estate Plan After Divorce

You did it! Your divorce is finally over with, finalized, and filed away. You are probably a lot less stressed than you were last week. Before you let that feeling of having nothing to worry about flee your mind, you should consider updating your estate plan quickly. After you become a single individual, updating your healthcare power of attorney, will, financial power of attorney, and your trust documents to reflect your new status is essential. 

Imagine if you passed away after your divorce and all of your estate and money fell into the hands of your ex-spouse because you forgot to change your estate plan. Although some courts in certain states will require you to list your ex-spouse in some estate planning documents, like with joint accounts, most courts will allow you to change most everything else. You definitely do not want a devious and mean ex that is seeking revenge to have the power to pull the plug lest you become incapacitated. Change that healthcare power of attorney before your downfall. Contact an estate planning lawyer in Philadelphia, PA. This will help you have a clearer picture of what to revise and what to leave be. 

Steps to Take Because of Divorce

You can even discuss the possibility of remarriage and how it will affect your new estate plan. Your Philadelphia, PA estate planning lawyer can help you review your life insurance policies, any financial investments, or independently owned assets that you have, and pick out who you want to pass your things onto when you die. 

The first thing you should change, with the help of a Philadelphia, PA estate planning lawyer, is your will. Your estate planning lawyer may likely recommend revoking your prior will that named your ex and create a new one. If you have any children, you may want to name them as your healthcare power of attorney or financial power of attorney, unless they are minors. 

If you currently possess a revocable living trust, you must remember to update the documents. Your ex-spouse may be a beneficiary or a fiduciary.  It’s time for changes and replacements. Further, if your trust is not revocable, address changes before you finalize your divorce.

Everyone works hard for their finances. You do not want to see your hard work go to waste in the event you cannot take care of your money, and your ex gets the power to make gifts. Remember to change and update your estate plan to reflect your new marital status and mindset. Do not delay, because something could happen to you at any moment. 

The Basic Components of Estate Planning

As you’ve gotten older, there are specific benchmarks that you have gleefully reached. Graduating from college, getting your first degree-related job and getting married were all happy times to celebrate. The older you get, the more you have to look forward to, including becoming a parent for the first time in the months to come.

Another part of reaching these life milestones is dealing with a future that may be uncertain. What will happen to your growing family if you get injured, sick or die suddenly? While estate planning is not considered a life event to celebrate, it is a necessary step in taking care of your affairs. Learn what the two essential components of estate planning include, so you are ready to get the process going.

Drafting a Will

The most basic element of an estate plan is a will. This document sets forth what happens to personal property and assets after your death. If you die without a will, your family may have to go through a lengthy court process to secure the rights to that property. Before drafting a will, you need to think about who you want to appoint to administer it. This would be someone who will be able to handle the probate process, if applicable in your state. The administrator is responsible for getting an accounting of the property, reporting it to the court and then using what is necessary to pay off your debts. Whatever is left is divided in the way you outlined in the document. If you are married, your spouse typically assumes the estate unless the will does not get administered until they die.

Choosing People To Make Important Decisions

There may be times when you are temporarily sidelined due to medical complications or an accident. In some instances, this may turn into a long-term illness and inability to properly care for yourself. In these instances, you may want to include a few power of attorney documents in your estate plan. A power of attorney designates an individual to make decisions on your behalf regarding medical care. It is invoked when you are unable to make these choices yourself. This should be a person who you know will adhere to your wishes in this respect and make the choices you would expect, even if they are difficult.

Along with a medical power of attorney, you should also prepare a financial power of attorney document. The person you appoint in this document will be able to step in and handle your financial affairs in the event you cannot. Again, this should be someone who you trust to deal with your finances responsibly.

An estate planning lawyer in Philadelphia, PA from Klenk Law can further educate you on what you should include in these crucial documents.

For assistance in updating your estate plan, contact an estate planning lawyer Philadelphia, PA clients recommend from Klenk Law today.

What Our clients are saying

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Peter has done a great job with the estate planning for my father. He is very thorough and patient as we, the family need to make decisions.

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Peter and his associates made things easy for us.

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Peter and the whole team at Klenk Law are top notch. They are thorough, efficient and understanding of client needs. He was able to tailor our estate planning needs just how we envisioned.

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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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