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Ward Estate & Family Law - Helping Families Plan for the Future!

   
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What do you do after your loved one dies?

What do you do after your loved one dies? The pain of losing a loved one is difficult.  During these times, it’s hard to think of what to do next.  We often receive calls from our clients about what they need to do next.  After receiving countless calls from clients, we decided to put together […]

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Leaving Assets to Your Minor Children

Leaving Assets to Your Minor Children If you have minor age children, then – in all likelihood – structuring your estate plan to ensure that assets earmarked for distribution to your children are properly identified, maintained, and protected is critical to your overall planning goals.  But bequeathing assets to your minor age children is not […]

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Estate Planning for the Benefit of Your Pets

Estate Planning for the Benefit of Your Pets On April 7, 2011, Section 3C, Chapter 203 of the Massachusetts General Laws came into effect, which allows for the creation of “pet trusts” – thus bringing the state of Massachusetts in line with the vast majority of other states in empowering pet owners to provide for […]

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Housekeeping For Your Estate Plan

Once you’ve finished drafting and signing off on your various estate planning documents – your Will, your Power of Attorney, your Trusts, and more – there are still many loose ends (some one-time, some continuous) that you’ll have to tie up to ensure that your estate plan is executed smoothly down the road. Resist the […]

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Modifying an Existing Will

One concern that is commonly voiced by new estate planning clients is whether the desires they effectuated during the initial estate planning process are set in stone. In other words, clients frequently worry that they won’t be able to change their mind on certain provisions (or otherwise update their estate plan so as to be […]

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Revocable Living Trusts – An Overview

If you are looking into the possibility of estate planning in Massachusetts, you have likely come across the concept of a Revocable Living Trust (RLT). An RLT is a trust form that provides a great deal of versatility to the creator of the trust – otherwise known as the trustor – by enabling the trustor […]

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Qualified Personal Residence Trust – the Home Residence Trust

Would you like to ensure that your primary residence – or a vacation home – avoids excessive tax once it’s transferred to your intended beneficiaries? If you’re willing to accept a variety of restrictions affecting your use of the property, it’s worth considering a qualified personal residence trust (QPRT).   A QPRT is an irrevocable […]

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Avoiding Probate in Massachusetts

Despite the fact that the state of Massachusetts has implemented simplified and informal probate options for those estates with limited assets, minimal complications, and no conflicts, there is still a great deal of risk associated with going through probate. There is no guarantee that estate assets will go through the simplified procedures – if an […]

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Why Avoid Probate in Massachusetts?

In the state of Massachusetts, an estate need not be probated – whether informal, formal, or voluntary probate – so long as the estate assets are structured such that they are exempt from or otherwise avoid the probate process. As the setup can be quite complicated, it is recommend that you consult with a qualified […]

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Formal and Informal Probate in Massachusetts: What’s the Difference?

In Massachusetts, when a person (the decedent) dies with an executed Will, their estate assets must go through probate – unless they qualify for certain probate exemptions. Probate is the process for determining the proper distribution of estate assets to the beneficiaries. If the decedent dies without an executed Will, the estate assets must still […]

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