At Costa Law our experienced wills and estate lawyers offer the strategic planning and creative solutions required to manage and preserve your assets. Estate planning represents the process by which an individual prepares and arranges for the disposition of an estate during his or her lifetime. A Will is the last declaration of your wishes that can range from how your estate will be distributed to who will have guardianship of your children. A properly drafted Will can eliminate future uncertainties over the administration of property, financial assets, taxes, and other expenses associated with an estate. Without a properly drafted Will, the law of intestacy applies and will decide on how your property and assets will be handled and divided, which means that you lose significant control over the process. Where children are involved, a Public Trustee may also be appointed to govern care and control over them. A properly drafted Will can give you a peace of mind knowing that those you care about are taken care of.
Power of Attorney is a legal document that gives someone else – this person is called your attorney – the power to act on your behalf. Unless you limit your attorney’s power, the attorney can do anything in respect to the property and/or personal care, that the grantor, if capable, could do, except make or change the grantor’s Will. The scope of this authority may be expressly limited by the grantor if he or she so chooses. This limitation can be in relation to the subject matter – the property – or it can be a temporal limitation which limits the time the Power of Attorney applies. It is important that the terms in the document are not vague or ambiguous in order to protect you and your property.