Estate Planning

The primary focus of traditional estate planning is the orderly and systematic transfer of a person’s assets to their heirs and beneficiaries.  The evolution of regulations governing valuation, real estate, probate, taxes, healthcare, and other considerations has resulted in a varied and complex modern system that requires a comprehensive understanding of those disciplines in order to fully maximize the benefits for an individual or family seeking to transfer wealth in the most efficient way possible.  While every individual’s or family’s goals will be different in crafting an estate plan, the fundamental desire is the same:  make sure your wealth reaches the individual(s) or organization(s) you select, in the manner you choose, with minimal exposure to liability for claims, disputes, unnecessary costs and expenses, and taxes while ensuring that you are able to maintain your standard of living.

“…orderly and systematic transfer of a person’s assets to their heirs and beneficiaries.”

Revocable Living Trusts

This is the most commonly utilized estate planning instrument for those seeking to avoid having an heir or beneficiary have to probate their estate after death.  Along with the Trust Agreement, our firm also provides a pour-over Will; Durable Power-of-Attorney; Advanced Directives for Healthcare (i.e., “Living Will”); complete property transfer directions; and, assistance with conveyances (e.g., deed(s), title transfer(s), etc.).

Last Will & Testament

The most well-known and most common instrument utilized in estate planning.  While it requires an heir or beneficiary to probate the estate, it is commonly preferred because of its simplicity and the security provided by the requisite judicial involvement.  Along with your last Will & Testament, our firm provides a Durable Power of Attorney and Advanced Directives for Health Care (i.e., “Living Will”).

Irrevocable Trusts

A more complex and customized version of the revocable living trust, this type of Trust is intended to maximize tax benefits and restrict successor trustees and/or beneficiaries in their use of Trust assets long after death.  Due to the oversight involved and the particularity required, irrevocable trusts are used in rare cases where the individual(s) or family determine their circumstances require it.

How Retainer Fees Work

Once you issue payment as a retainer for legal services, the Oklahoma Rules of Professional Conduct for Attorneys instruct that said payment be placed into a client “Trust Account.”  As services are provided to you, costs and expenses are tracked and a time log of work performed is created.  These costs, expenses, and hourly billing are paid from the balance of the “Trust Account.”  Contact us for a list of retainer fees for common Trust & Estate Planning requests.