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Heritage Tree LogoWhat to Consider Before Your First Estate Planning Consultation in Pennsylvania

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Estate planning is a very important task that will protect you and your family’s futures. If you are preparing for your first consultation with our firm, continue reading to learn more about what you should keep in mind. Our Butler County estate planning & probate attorneys are ready to help.

1. Guardians and Conservators for Minor Children
If you have children under 18 or are considering having children, you should select one or more guardians who can be named separately or as a group. You should name a successor in the event that the first guardian is unable or reluctant to fulfill this important role. This is an issue that can be one of the most difficult for couples to answer. If you find you cannot agree, it is critical that you do not allow this to stop you from visiting or revisiting your estate plan; your estate planning attorney will be able to provide you with advice, and having some say in the guardian of your children is preferable to allowing a court to determine without any of your own input.

2. Trustees, Personal Representatives, and Agents Under Durable Power of Attorney
Your assets can be handled by the Agent under your power of attorney if you are incapacitated, or by the Personal Representative of your estate after your death. Furthermore, the Trustee of your Living Trust is allowed to deal with all assets owned by the Trust in the event of either death or incapacity. It is very common for these three roles to be served by the same fiduciaries.

3. Personal Property
If there are any distinct items of tangible personal property (e.g. cars, clothing, jewelry, artwork, collectibles, etc.) that you would like to be presented to someone other than a surviving spouse (or, in the event there is no surviving spouse, to be assigned to specific individuals rather than split as equally as possible among surviving children), create a list of the items and who should obtain them before your first meeting.

4. Patient Advocate Designation and Living Will
A Patient Advocate is documented to make medical decisions for you if you are incapable of doing so, including carrying out your wishes as described in your Living Will.

5. All Other Property
Are there any items of remaining property that you would like to go to somebody besides a surviving spouse (or, if no surviving spouse, equally to surviving children)? Examples include business interests and real estate, and more.


Whether you are dealing with matters involving estate planning, estate administration, or elder law, you need a legal team that you can feel confident will represent your best interests, every step of the way. We are that legal team. Contact Heritage Elder Law & Estate Planning today so we can get started.

Estate Planning & Probate

Whether you’re looking to secure your family’s future, protect a loved one’s assets or provide a loved one with the financial assistance he or she needs to afford long-term care, we are committed to serving your needs. We consistently offer creative and effective solutions to your most complex and sensitive estate planning needs and help your wishes come to fruition through our probate service.

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Elder Law, Medicaid Planning & Asset Protection

Everybody’s life is full of both expected and unexpected challenges. With our experience with elder law issues, we can help you enjoy the later years and retain full control over decisions that directly impact you. The attorneys at Heritage Elder Law & Estate Planning view every challenge as an opportunity. We can help you or your loved one today.

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