Protect, preserve, and provide for your family
Our estate planning attorneys bring much more to your financial and estate planning needs than just legal skills. We have in-depth business and tax expertise, a commitment to personal relationships and an understanding of family dynamics. All of these add value and depth to counsel on trust and estate matters.
Individuals, families and businesses all receive the highest level of personal attention when working with our legal team. You can rely on us for business transition needs, transfer of property, wills and trusts, medical directives, charitable giving, estate administration, litigation and more. We also team with financial advisors, accountants and insurance vendors to coordinate your entire financial picture.
Simple or complex wills
We firmly believe that every adult should engage in some estate planning in order to avoid the sometimes catastrophic results that may occur without proper planning. A Last Will & Testament should be a part of every estate plan. We recognize that there are times when a “simple” will is appropriate, but that there are also situations where a more “complex” will is needed in order to properly pass or protect assets as desired.
Trust formation, funding, and administration
Trusts can help achieve a variety of goals—including tax planning and asset protection for you and/or family members. Trusts may be established during lifetime or at death. We understand and advocate the tax and asset-protection benefits that trusts can offer, and we want to engage in detailed conversations with you in order to determine how trusts may help achieve your estate planning desires. We also help guide a trustee to fulfill his or her fiduciary duties in the administration of a trust, and counsel and guide beneficiaries with respect to their interests and rights in a trust.
Advance directives (including appointment of health care representatives and living wills)
Without proper planning, the law may impose health care representatives and directives upon you that would not be consistent with your desires. We work with you to make sure that your health care directives properly carry out your intent.
We work with you to first ascertain if formal estate administration is necessary or desirable. If formal administration is appropriate, we guide you through the process of fulfilling your fiduciary duties, with an emphasis on accomplishing the administration in an efficient manner.
Special needs planning
A critical part of estate planning for families with a special needs child is ensuring the continued eligibility or receipt of benefits for the special needs individual. Many public benefits are available to individuals with disabilities only if the individual’s assets and income are below a fixed limit. Special needs planning allows these individuals to receive inheritances, equitable distributions, and personal injury settlements while maintaining these public benefits.
Federal estate tax and income tax laws have changed dramatically over the past several years. Federal estate tax planning remains very important for estates that are, or that may be (depending upon growth), over the estate tax exemption amount. Even if federal estate taxes are not a concern, the estate plan should consider and plan to minimize income taxes.
Closely held and family-owned business succession planning
We understand that succession planning should involve much more than a simple division of business interests in the next generation. We work with you to understand your family, business and desires, and to build a succession plan that helps assure future business success.
Learn how our estate planning team can help
Compassionate, accessible and responsive, we know how to make a positive difference in our clients’ lives and look forward to working with you and your family. For the convenience of our clients we have two office locations: Bloomington and Indianapolis.
To schedule a meeting with a member of our estate planning team, contact our Bloomington office at 812.332.5000 and our Indianapolis office at 317.453.2000.