• West Chester Pa Inheritance Taxation Lawyers

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    West Chester Pa Inheritance Taxation Lawyers – Intro

    A major area of misinformation and misunderstandings in the estate law and estate planning areas are the taxes that are imposed upon one’s death in Pennsylvania.

    Very simply, two death taxes can be imposed on the death of Pennsylvania residents – the:

    • Federal Estate Tax
    • Pennsylvania Inheritance Tax

    However, and unlike the income tax, which is very descriptive in its title as it is imposed upon your income, the phrases Federal Estate Tax and Pa Inheritance Tax are misnomers in that may tend to belie the actual fact that these are taxes imposed by virtue of your death.

    The issue of estate taxes or “death taxes,” which occur when a primary estate holder dies and passes wealth and property to the next generation, has become a widely debated and legislated area in recent years.

    West Chester Pa Inheritance Taxation Lawyers – Inheritance Tax

    Pennsylvania assesses taxes on property passing to a person’s heirs at death. The Pa Inheritance Tax returns is due nine months after the date of death.

    West Chester Pa Inheritance Taxation Lawyers – Rates

    The Pennsylvania Inheritance Tax is assessed on estate property and joint assets owned by a decedent at the time of death. The tax rate is determined by the relationship of the person receiving the property to the decedent. There is no tax on property passing to a husband or wife. The tax rates are as follows:

    1. To spouses 0%
    2. To children 4.5%
    3. To siblings 12%
    4. To anyone else 15%
    5. To charities 0%

    West Chester Pa Inheritance Taxation Lawyers – Notes

    Life insurance proceeds are exempt from Pennsylvania inheritance tax. So, too, are the benefits from many retirement plans, but you have to weave through technical rules to make sure it’s exempt. Unfortunately, it’s safe to say that the Department of Revenue says that an IRA is subject to inheritance tax if the decedent was over age 59½ at the time of death. Two other exemptions were recently created by Act 85 of 2012. These exemptions are effective for estates of those who died after June 30, 2012. For those estates, many farms will now be exempt from inheritance tax if they pass to so-called lineal descendants or siblings. Finally, Act 52 of 2013 added an exemption for the transfer of a “qualified family-owned business” for those dying after June 30, 2013. In general terms, to meet this exemption, the business must have fewer than 50 employees and a net book value of less than $5 million and it must pass to a spouse, lineal descendants (children, grandchildren, etc.), siblings, the lineal descendants of siblings, ancestors (parents, grandparents) and siblings of ancestors.

    West Chester Pa Inheritance Taxation Lawyers – Schedule A

    Real Estate

    Fill out Schedule A if the decedent held any real estate or a partial interest in real estate on the date of death. You will need to include an appraisal of the fair market value and county tax assessment. You will also need to include copies of deeds if the deceased owned only a portion of the property.

    With the top federal estate tax rate at 40 percent, failure to plan can result in the federal government taking a very large bite out of the assets transferred to a person’s family. If the holdings are not liquid, the family may even be forced to sell assets (such as a family business) in order to pay a large tax bill, which is due within 9 months of death.

    The federal transfer tax system includes the Estate Tax and Gift Tax. Each person has a lifetime exemption, or “unified credit,” which is an amount that he or she can pass free from federal taxes during life, or at death.

    West Chester Pa Inheritance Taxation Lawyers – Federal Estate Tax

    Historically, the Federal Estate Tax has begun at a wealth threshold.  If you possess less than the wealth threshold at your death, the federal estate tax will not be applicable.

    If it is applicable, the tax is imposed on a percentage scale according to the amount of your wealth (i.e., potentially 47% of the value of your assets above the wealth threshold).

    The current wealth threshold of the Federal Estate Tax has been changing drastically throughout the last decade. It has increased, disappeared, and reappeared in 2011.

    In 2005, the threshold was $1,500,000.00; in 2006, 2007, and 2008, the threshold was $2,000,000.00; in 2009, the threshold was $3,500,000.00; and in 2010, the Federal Estate Tax was scheduled to be, and in fact was, eliminated.

    However, and although the Federal Estate Tax was scheduled to return with a wealth threshold of just $1,000,000.00, in 2011, it did not. The Internal Revenue Service changed that law and “announced the 2015 estate and gift tax limits […] and the federal estate tax exemption rises to $5.43 million per person, and the annual gift exclusion amount stays at $14,000.” “IRS Announces 2015 Estate And Gift Tax Limits”

    The federal estate tax exemption—that’s the amount an individual can leave to heirs without having to pay federal estate tax—will be $5.43 million in 2015, up from $5.34 million for 2014. That’s another $90,000 that can be passed on tax-free. The top federal estate tax rate is 40%.

  • Can I Sue My West Chester Pa Power of Attorney?

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    Can I Sue My West Chester Pa Power of Attorney? – Intro

    I explained in West Chester Pa Powers of Attorney Lawyers that Wayne Pa Powers of Attorney are documents that convey legal authority (to the Pa Principal) to act in the name of another person (Pa Agent) for his or her health and welfare. A Wayne Pa Power of Attorney can grant broad authority or be very limited in scope. Unfortunately, there is so much fraud involved in their usage today.

    Can I Sue My West Chester Pa Power of Attorney? – Challenge

    I have explained in West Chester Pa Beneficiary Lawyers, I have represented thousands of beneficiaries during my decades as an Estate Attorney. I can provide the necessary advice to protect your rights in nearly any Pa Estate, Pa Trust, and/or Pa Power of Attorney planning matter. If you suspect that a Pa Last Will, a Pa Trust, and/or a Pa Power of Attorney does not reflect the wishes of the deceased, you have a right to challenge the proceedings in court via a Wayne Pa Model Court Accounting. As I stated – and I cannot emphasize this enough – the fraud virtually amounts to outright stealing.

    Can I Sue My West Chester Pa Power of Attorney? – Document Purposes

    A Pa Power of Attorney grants your Pa Agent (Fiduciary) the ability to control all of your affairs. Pa Powers of Attorney are documents that convey legal authority (to the Pa Principal) to act in the name of another person (Pa Agent) for his or her health and welfare.

    It is a very powerful document; it permits your Pa Agent the broadest of powers to do anything that you could have done (i.e., give all of your money away). Yet, inherent in the broad powers that your Pa Agent possesses is the possibility – the extremely real possibility – that your Agent under your Power of Attorney may actually do anything that you could have done (i.e., give all your money away).

    Can I Sue My West Chester Pa Power of Attorney? – Fiduciary Traits

    • Your Agent should be able and willing, first and foremost.
    • Your Agent should also be levelheaded and familiar.

    Can I Sue My West Chester Pa Power of Attorney? – Common Misconceptions

    A common misconception is that a Power of Attorney eliminates your ability to act for yourself.  Quite to the contrary, and until you are deemed to be incapacitated, a Power of Attorney should properly be viewed as a “shared authority.”  After you have executed a Power of Attorney, you still retain all of the powers and decision-making abilities that you possessed beforehand, including the power to revoke the Power of Attorney.

    Another common misconception is that your Agent needs your permission to act.  Quite to the contrary, a Power of Attorney is a very powerful document.  It permits your Agent the broadest of powers to do anything that you could have done (i.e., give all of your money away), and, inherent in the broad powers that your Agent possesses is the possibility – the extremely real possibility – that your Agent under your Power of Attorney may actually do anything that you could have done (i.e., give all your money away).

    A Pa Power of Attorney can grant broad authority or be very limited in scope. I help you prepare for contingencies based on the specific circumstances surrounding you and your loved one. However, generally speaking, powers of attorney address three main areas of concern:

    Can I Sue My West Chester Pa Power of Attorney? – Notice Provision Requirement

    The following shows – in capital letters – what is required by a Wayne Pa Agent under a Pa Power of Attorney. I must emphasize that it states that “YOUR AGENT MUST KEEP YOUR FUNDS SEPARATE FROM YOUR AGENT’S FUNDS.”

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    Can I Sue My West Chester Pa Power of Attorney? – Acknowledgement Provision Requirement

    Again, the following shows – in capital letters – what is required by a Wayne Pa Agent under a Pa Power of Attorney. I must emphasize that it states that “I SHALL KEEP THE ASSETS OF THE PRINCIPAL SEPARATE FROM MY FUNDS.”

    west-chester-pa-power-of-attorney-acknowledgement-lawyers-attorneys-lawyers-law-firms

    Can I Sue My Wayne Pa Power of Attorney? – Accountings by Agents, Powers of Attorney

    A Pa Durable General Power of Attorney gives an “Agent” power to manage assets. An interested person can Compel the Agent to file a Formal Accounting, explaining every action taken and justifying every expense. In the alternative, in order to obtain a release of liability, an Agent can Assemble, Submit and Defend a Formal Accounting.

    Can I Sue My Wayne Pa Power of Attorney? – Assembling, Submitting and Defending Accountings for Agents

    If you served as an Agent you would be wise to receive a legal release for your service. First of all, long after you have completed your duties the court might force you to file a Formal Accounting if you have no release.

    Further, it is better to file your Accounting when you still have the funds to pay for the costs. Delaying may prove costly. Especially relevant, you will personally shoulder the cost to assemble and defend the Formal Accounting.

    Has a Beneficiary has obtained a court order compelling you to account? If so, it would be wise to have the Formal Accounting prepared and defended by an experienced Probate and Estates Accounting Lawyer. If you are unprepared, the judge could surcharge you for any amount you cannot properly explain.

    Can I Sue My Collegeville Pa Power of Attorney? – Compelling A Wayne Pa Agent To Account

    Are you are an interested person who believes an Pa Agent has abused their powers? If so, you may have your experienced Probate and Estates Accounting Lawyer file a Petition forcing the Agent to file a Formal Accounting.

    Once filed, the interested parties may Contest and Object to the Accounting. If the judge believes the Agent’s actions wrongfully reduced the estate, then the judge may surcharge the Agent. If the Agent cannot recover the funds, the Agent must replenish the estate with the Agent’s own funds.

    Can I Sue My Collegeville Pa Power of Attorney? – Accountings by Agents, Powers of Attorney

    A Durable General Power of Attorney gives an “Agent” power to manage assets. An interested person can Compel the Agent to file a Formal Accounting, explaining every action taken and justifying every expense. In the alternative, in order to obtain a release of liability, an Agent can Assemble, Submit and Defend a Formal Accounting.

    Can I Sue My Collegeville Pa Power of Attorney? – Assembling, Submitting and Defending Accountings for Agents.

    If you served as a Wayne Pa Agent you would be wise to receive a legal release for your service. First of all, long after you have completed your duties the court might force you to file a Formal Accounting if you have no release.

    Further, it is better to file your Accounting when you still have the funds to pay for the costs. Delaying may prove costly. Especially relevant, you will personally shoulder the cost to assemble and defend the Formal Accounting.

    Has a Beneficiary has obtained a court order compelling you to account? If so, it would be wise to have the Formal Accounting prepared and defended by an experienced Accounting Lawyer. If you are unprepared, the judge could surcharge you for any amount you cannot properly explain.

    Can I Sue My Collegeville Pa Power of Attorney? – The Pa Statute

    In Pennsylvania your duties as agent are specified in the Probate, Estates and Fiduciaries Code. The specific section can be found at Title 20, Chapter 56, Powers of Attorney. Although this section contains all of the rules that apply to Pa Powers of Attorney, the areas I am focusing on in this post are your duties that apply to you as a Pa Agent.

    Section 5601.3 of the law (20 Pa. C.S.A. §5601.3) lays out your duties when you are acting as someone’s agent under a Pa Power off Attorney.

    1. (a)  General rule.–Notwithstanding any provision in the power of attorney, an agent that has accepted appointment shall:
      1. (1)  [ … ]
      2. (2)  Act in good faith.
      3. (3)  [ … ]
    2. (b)  Other duties.–Except as otherwise provided in the power of attorney, an agent that has accepted appointment shall:
      • (1)  Act loyally for the principal’s benefit.
        • (1.1)  Keep the agent’s funds separate from the principal’s funds unless:
          • (i)  the funds were not kept separate as of the date of the execution of the power of attorney; or
          • (ii)  the principal commingles the funds after the date of the execution of the power of attorney and the agent is the principal’s spouse.
      • (2)  [ … ]
      • (3)  Act with the care, competence and diligence ordinarily exercised by agents in similar circumstances.
      • (4)  Keep a record of all receipts, disbursements and transactions made on behalf of the principal.
      • (5) [ … ]
      • (6) [ … ]

    Although I omitted a few provisions of Section 5601.3, the focus of this post was to explain that commingling of assets will most likely create many problems for you. And be sure you read the power of attorney document and understand your duties and responsibilities before you start to act on behalf of your principal. If there is anything you don’t understand, get legal advice up-front not after the fact.

    Can I Sue My Collegeville Pa Power of Attorney? – Conclusion

    Pennsylvania law provides that Pa Agents can be called to account for their actions under Pa Powers of Attorney. You may have financial liability if you are unable to adequately demonstrate the propriety of your actions.

    West Chester Pa Attorneys Probate Guide

    The West Chester Pa Attorneys Guide is the core of this website. It consists of the best, most important articles, posts, and pages on this website. Their focus is to provide the best and most complete information on a particular topic, rather than to sell my services.

    John B. Whalen, Jr., JD., LL.M., is an AV Peer Review Rated Preeminent 5.0 and Avvo Rated 10.0 Superb (obtaining over 95 client reviews and peer endorsements) premier and prestigious Attorney and Counselor at Law. He is located at 696 Pont Reading Road Ardmore Pa 19003. He serves all surrounding counties, on all 7 days, from 9:00 AM to 10:00 PM, and on evenings, weekends, and holidays. He provides free initial consults all seven days, provides home visits, and provides flat fee structures. He can be reached by email at jw60297@me.com, and by telephone at 1-484-417-6244. He has amassed over 60 prestigious and premier professional awards and over 5000 client reviews and endorsements. Mr. Whalen has achieved the AV Peer Review Rated Preeminent award from Martindale, AV Peer Judicial Preeminent award, the Avvo Rated Superb 10.00 award, the Avvo Rated Top Lawyer award, the Clients’ Choice Award, and the Top One Percent (1%) award. He is the recipient of the Legum Magister Post-Doctorate Degree (LL.M.) in Taxation (from the Villanova University School of Law), a recipient of the American Jurisprudence Award in Wills, Trusts, and Estates (from the Widener University School of Law), and a recipient of the ABA-BNA Law Award for Academic Excellence (from the Widener University School of Law).

  • West Chester Pa Probate – Lightning

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    West Chester Pa Probate – Lightning

    The difference between the almost right word and the right word is really a large matter – it’s the difference between the lightning bug and the lightning.” (Mark Twain).

    West Chester Pa Probate – Lightning – Tax Returns

    Whether you are a

    • Pa Agent (under a Pa Power of Attorney),
    • Pa Surrogate (under a Pa Living Will),
    • Pa Trustee (under a Pa Trust), and/o
    • Pa Executor (under a Pa Last Will),

    you will ultimately be responsible for any and all problems, mistakes, and unpaid taxes.

    Please also be aware that, when it comes to tax returns that were not filed, there is no statute of limitations – meaning that you could receive notice that taxes were due, but not paid, and are still currently due at any time.

    West Chester Pa Probate – Lightning – Lawyers Representation

    Lastly, and most importantly, if you retained a professional (i.e., a lawyer, an accountant, etc.), call that professional and ask them what is the status of anything with which they assisted you. They should be able to give you accurate, precise, and immediate answers to any of your concerns. If they do not, please be forewarned. You may want to seek assistance elsewhere.

    In keeping with Mark Twain’s quote, let’s try to separate the lightning bugs from the lightning.

    Please contact me if you have any questions.

    Thank you.

    John B. Whalen, Jr., Esq.

    John B. Whalen, Jr., JD., LL.M., is an AV Peer Review Rated Preeminent 5.0 and Avvo Rated 10.0 Superb (obtaining over 95 client reviews and peer endorsements) premier and prestigious Attorney and Counselor at Law. He is located at 696 Pont Reading Road Ardmore Pa 19003. He serves all surrounding counties, on all 7 days, from 9:00 AM to 10:00 PM, and on evenings, weekends, and holidays. He provides free initial consults all seven days, provides home visits, and provides flat fee structures. He can be reached by email at jw60297@me.com, and by telephone at 1-484-417-6244. He has amassed over 60 prestigious and premier professional awards and over 5000 client reviews and endorsements. Mr. Whalen has achieved the AV Peer Review Rated Preeminent award from Martindale, AV Peer Judicial Preeminent award, the Avvo Rated Superb 10.00 award, the Avvo Rated Top Lawyer award, the Clients’ Choice Award, and the Top One Percent (1%) award. He is the recipient of the Legum Magister Post-Doctorate Degree (LL.M.) in Taxation (from the Villanova University School of Law), a recipient of the American Jurisprudence Award in Wills, Trusts, and Estates (from the Widener University School of Law), and a recipient of the ABA-BNA Law Award for Academic Excellence (from the Widener University School of Law).

  • West Chester Pa Estate Planning Guide

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    West Chester Pa Estate Planning Guide – Intro

    The West Chester Pa Estate Planning Guide explains how the best gift you can give your loved ones is to have your Pa Estate Planning complete. Unfortunately, to a great extent, misinformation about critical terms such as Pa Inheritance Tax, Federal Estate tax, Pa Probate, avoiding probate, simple will, and Pa Living Trust, tends to lead to misunderstandings of estate planning. These misunderstandings, in turn, tend to lead to mistakes in estate planning. These mistakes, again, in turn, tend to lead to unintended results after one’s death. In an effort to eliminate such misinformation, misunderstandings, and mistakes, this article will hopefully serve as a review – in very simple terms – of the basic, core issues of estate planning and its basic documents.

    West Chester Pa Estate Planning Guide – The Summary

    There are four primary documents that tend to form the foundation of most good estate plans. These documents are a

    • Pa Power of Attorney,
    • Pa Advance Directive for Health Care (a Pa Living Will),
    • Pa Last Will, and (at, times)
    • Pa Trust

    Although each document has a different purpose, each document designates someone who is responsible for carrying out the wishes set forth in the document.

    I refer to these people – those in charge – as “The Bosses.

    West Chester Pa Estate Planning Guide – The Bosses

    Each document has a boss who is in charge of carrying out the terms of that particular document. Under Pennsylvania law, the proper terms for the bosses are:

    • Pa Agent (under a Pa Power of Attorney),
    • Pa Surrogate (under a Pa Living Will),
    • Pa Executor (under a Pa Last Will),
    • Pa Trustee (under a Pa Trust).

    Although a technical knowledge of these terms can be useful, it is not the point of this article. The focus is to illustrate that an Agent, a Surrogate, an Executor, and a Trustee are just the bosses of that respective document.

    West Chester Pa Estate Planning Guide – The Powers

    Each boss has powers, and these powers can be summarized very simply.

    • Pa Agent (under a Power of Attorney) can help manage all of your affairs
    • Pa Surrogate (under a Pa Living Will) can ensure your end of life decisions.
    • Pa Executor (under a Pa Last Will) can administer your Pa Estate
    • Pa Trustee (under a Pa Trust) can monitor and manage your Pa Trust.

    Again, and although a technical knowledge of the parameters of these various powers can be useful, it is not the point of this article. The focus is to illustrate that a Pa Agent, a Pa Surrogate, a Pa Executor, and a Pa Trustee can generally possess broad powers to act for you under that respective document.

    West Chester Pa Estate Planning Guide – The Traits

    Although all four of the documents require bosses that possess certain traits or characteristics in order for that document to be as effective as possible, I have experienced that two traits should be inherent in all of the bosses of all four of the documents

    • Ability
    • Willingness.

    Although the bosses of each of the documents should also possess additional traits for that particular document to be effective (all of which shall be addressed later), unless your boss is able and willing to act on your behalf, your desires and wishes may not be followed.

    West Chester Pa Estate Planning Guide – The Documents

    There are four primary documents that tend to form the foundation of most good estate plans. A succinct review of each, and the misunderstandings of each, follows.

    West Chester Pa Estate Planning Guide – Powers of Attorney

    A West Chester Pa Power of Attorney can grant your boss (Pa Agent) the ability to control all of your affairs. It is a very powerful document; it can permit your Pa Agent the broadest of powers to do anything which you could have done (i.e., give all your money away), but yet, inherent in these broad powers, is the reality that your Pa Agent may actually do anything which you could have done (i.e., give all your money away).

    A Pa Power of Attorney can be durable (effective after you are incapacitated), current (effective now), or springing (effective upon the happening of a future event (i.e., the decision by your treating physician that you can no longer act for yourself).

    A common misconception is that a Pa Power of Attorney eliminates your ability to act for yourself. Quite to the contrary, and until you are deemed incapacitated, a Pa Power of Attorney should properly be viewed as a shared authority – you still retain all of the powers and decision making ability that you possessed before you executed the Pa Power of Attorney.

    With respect to additional traits that your boss should possess (in addition to being able and willing), I have found that your boss (Agent) should also be:

    • Levelheaded
    • Familiar with your affairs.

    West Chester Pa Estate Planning Guide – Living Wills

    A Pa Advance Directive for Health Care can grant your boss (Pa Surrogate) the ability to execute your end of life decisions and decide whether life-sustaining measures should be used. The common misconception of this document is when it will become operative.

    There are two triggers that must occur before your Surrogate is even given the option of acting: the first is that you must be unable to communicate your own decisions, and the second is that you must have been diagnosed with a terminal condition or as being permanently unconscious With respect to additional traits that your boss should possess (in addition to being able and willing), I have found that your boss (Surrogate) should also be:

    • Stoic
    • Strong.

    West Chester Pa Estate Planning Guide – Last Wills

    A Pa Last Will can grant your boss (Executor) the ability to administer your Estate.

    The most common misconception that surrounds a Pa Will is the process called Pa Probate and the seemingly universal theme that it should be avoided at all costs.

    Again, and virtually to the contrary, the word probate is merely the Latin infinitive verb that means to prove, and, although some states do have onerous probate procedures (where the avoidance of probate may be a prudent strategy), Pennsylvania is not one of those states. In fact, probating a Will in Pennsylvania is very simple.

    Also very important is the fact that a Will only disposes of the assets (1) that you own in your individual name alone and (2) that possess no beneficiary designations (i.e., no tags). Consequently, items owned jointly with another are controlled by property law (not Will law) and will pass to the joint owner(s) at your death, and items that have beneficiary designations will be controlled by contract law (not Will law) and pass to the designated beneficiaries at your death. With respect to additional traits that your boss should possess (in addition to being able and willing), I have found that your boss (Executor) should also be

    • Honest
    • Diplomatic. 

    West Chester Pa Estate Planning Guide – Trusts

    A Pa Trust can grant your boss (Pa Trustee) the ability to monitor and manage your Pa Trust. The types of Trusts can be viewed simply as being either (1) revocable (which are created during your life and which become irrevocable upon your death), (2) irrevocable (which are created during your life and become irrevocable upon their creation), and (3) and testamentary (which are created under your Will and which become irrevocable upon your death

    Vital is the fact that they can be extremely useful for individuals with Special Needs (i.e., autism, addictions, minors, etc). With respect to additional traits that your boss should possess (in addition to being able and willing), I have found that your boss (Trustee) should also be

    • Attentive
    • Decisive.

    West Chester Pa Estate Planning Guide – Taxes

    Another area of misconception in the estate planning area is the taxes that are imposed on value of your assets on the date of your death. Basically, two death taxes can be imposed on Pennsylvania residents:

    • Federal Estate Tax and the
    • Pa Pennsylvania Inheritance Tax.

    Unlike the income tax, which is very descriptive in its title as it is imposed upon your income, the phrases Federal Estate Tax and Pa Inheritance Tax are misnomers that may tend to belie the actual fact that these are taxes imposed by virtue of your death.

    Federal Estate Tax

    The Federal Estate Tax begins at a wealth threshold. If you possess less than the wealth threshold at your death, the federal estate tax will not be applicable. If it is applicable, the tax is imposed on a percentage scale according to the amount of wealth (i.e., potentially 47% of the value of your assets above the current $1,500,000. 00 wealth threshold). This threshold has been, is, and is scheduled to continue to increase. In 2005, the threshold is $1,500,000. 00; in 2006, 2007, and 2008, the threshold is $2,000,000. 00; in 2009, the threshold is $3,500,000.00; in 2010, the Federal Estate Tax is scheduled to be eliminated; but in 2011, the Federal Estate Tax is scheduled to return with a threshold of $1,000,000.00.

    Pa Inheritance Tax

    The Pennsylvania Inheritance Tax has no wealth threshold and starts immediately. It is imposed on a percentage based on the relationship of the beneficiary.

    • 00.00% = Spouses and Charities;
    • 04.50% = Lineal Descendants;
    • 12.00% = Siblings; and
    • 15.00% = Collaterals (everyone else).

    West Chester Pa Estate Planning Guide – Pointers

    In conclusion, there are four basic pointers for all who are faced with estate planning.

    • First – title your assets with the utmost care (i.e., joint ownership, beneficiary designations, etc.)
    • Second – with respect to transferring your assets (i.e., re-titling, gifting, etc) during your lifetime, get advice before you do so (before the bombs go off).
    • Third – always have your estate planning documents up-to-date because laws, taxes, and people change.
    • Fourth – and most importantly – pick your bosses very carefully.

    West Chester Pa Attorneys Probate Guide

    The West Chester Pa Attorneys Guide is the core of this website. It consists of the best, most important articles, posts, and pages on this website. Their focus is to provide the best and most complete information on a particular topic, rather than to sell my services.

    John B. Whalen, Jr., JD., LL.M., is an AV Peer Review Rated Preeminent 5.0 and Avvo Rated 10.0 Superb (obtaining over 95 client reviews and peer endorsements) premier and prestigious Attorney and Counselor at Law. He is located at 696 Pont Reading Road Ardmore Pa 19003. He serves all surrounding counties, on all 7 days, from 9:00 AM to 10:00 PM, and on evenings, weekends, and holidays. He provides free initial consults all seven days, provides home visits, and provides flat fee structures. He can be reached by email at jw60297@me.com, and by telephone at 1-484-417-6244. He has amassed over 60 prestigious and premier professional awards and over 5000 client reviews and endorsements. Mr. Whalen has achieved the AV Peer Review Rated Preeminent award from Martindale, AV Peer Judicial Preeminent award, the Avvo Rated Superb 10.00 award, the Avvo Rated Top Lawyer award, the Clients’ Choice Award, and the Top One Percent (1%) award. He is the recipient of the Legum Magister Post-Doctorate Degree (LL.M.) in Taxation (from the Villanova University School of Law), a recipient of the American Jurisprudence Award in Wills, Trusts, and Estates (from the Widener University School of Law), and a recipient of the ABA-BNA Law Award for Academic Excellence (from the Widener University School of Law).

  • When Should I Update My West Chester Pa Last Will?

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    When Should I Update My West Chester Pa Last Will? – Bio

    John B. Whalen Jr Esq
    Serving West Chester Pa Probate Lawyers
    696 Pont Reading Road, Wayne, PA 19087


    When Should I Update My West Chester Pa Last Will? – Areas

    John provides a full range of services for Pa Wills: drafting, review, amendment, revocation, execution and probate. He provides reliable guidance for testators and executors.

    His experience in the probate court, resolving issues related to the validity of wills, enables him to provide practical advice for testators from all walks of life. Similarly, his work in the formation of wills gives us keen insight into how executors should interpret various aspects of a will that may initially seem unclear.

    Whether you are a testator formulating an estate plan or an executor implementing a decedent’s wishes, John B. Whalen, Jr. Esq. can simplify many complex aspects of the tasks before you.

    He offers pertinent and personal legal advice to obtain the results you need in a timely manner with the least stress possible. Once executed, your will remains your final statement of your intentions until you amend or revoke it.

    He recommends reviewing your will every three to five years and updating it to reflect your current wishes.

    West Chester Pa Beneficiary Lawyers

    There are many factors that can affect the distribution of estate assets. In some cases, there may be a Pa Will that identifies you as a beneficiary; in other cases, there may not be a will at all. In still other cases, there may be a dispute involving the administration of the estate. For example, a beneficiary may disagree with how the executor or personal representative is distributing assets.

    West Chester Pa Estate Administration Lawyers

    Pa Estate Administration is the process of settling a decedent’s affairs. When a loved one passes away, it can be an emotional time. In addition to grieving their passing, those that survive them must tie up all the legal and financial loose ends related to their life and estate. This includes addressing their Pa Last Will and following its instructions.

    West Chester Pa Estate Lawyers

    Pa Estate law comprises many areas of law. However, all of these areas of law focus on taking care of one’s person and property. Estate law is all of the laws that impact how a person makes decisions and issues directives about their personal affairs. A Pa Estate is anything that makes up a person’s net worth. Very simply, an estate is what a person has in their own name alone.

    West Chester Pa Estate Litigation Lawyers

    Most estates, especially when there is a proper will in place, are easily settled. Yet there are times when other factors complicate the issue, creating a situation that requires more careful consideration. For example, a family business, an estate that is in bankruptcy or an estate that holds significant amounts of real estate may become complicated quite quickly. This is where estate litigation comes into play.

    West Chester Pa Estate Planning Lawyers

    An attorney who specializes in Pa Estate Planning can help you create a complete plan (including Pa Last Wills, Pa Powers of Attorney, and Pa Living Wills, etc.) to protect your spouse and children if you become unable to manage your financial affairs. Pa Estate Planning allows you to make decisions now so your wishes can be carried out if you die or become incapacitated.

    West Chester Pa Powers of Attorney Lawyers

    When you execute a legal document called a power of attorney, you are authorizing another individual to make certain decisions on your behalf. The person who signs the document is called the principal and the person who is authorized to make decisions is known as the agent or attorney-in-fact.

    West Chester Pa Living Wills Lawyers

    Living wills are also referred to as an advance directive or a health care directive. It is a legal document that communicates your desire in the treatment of serious medical problems in the event that you are unable to speak for yourself. They do not go into effect unless you are incapacitated and unable to express yourself. Having a living will can relieve your close relatives from the burden of having to make the decision about whether to remove you from life support.

    West Chester Pa Trusts Lawyers

    Trusts are legal documents that allow you to control how your assets will be allocated or managed. You are considered the grantor and the person that manages and distributes assets in the trust is known as the trustee. Individuals who receive money or other assets are the beneficiaries.

    Property placed in a trust, unlike wills, is not subject to probate. You can also create a revocable trust which can be canceled or revoked at any time while you are alive. Trusts can be set up for a child’s education or to reduce estate taxes.

    West Chester Pa Last Wills Lawyers

    A Pa Last Will is an important document to execute in order to avoid disputes about how your assets will be divided when you die. The executor who administers the distribution of assets from your estate will allocate your possessions as you specified. You should periodically review your Will to make sure it is still relevant and accurate. Life changing events, such as the birth of a child or a marriage, may require amendments to the original document.

    West Chester Pa Last Wills Contests Lawyers

    A loved one’s legacy can ease the pain of loss by reminding heirs of a departed family member’s enduring love. But when questions arise about the validity of a will or the management of estate assets, uncertainty can arouse animosity and prevent closure.

    West Chester Pa Estate Litigation Lawyers

    Most estates, especially when there is a proper will in place, are easily settled. Yet there are times when other factors complicate the issue, creating a situation that requires more careful consideration. For example, a family business, an estate that is in bankruptcy or an estate that holds significant amounts of real estate may become complicated quite quickly. This is where estate litigation comes into play.

    West Chester Pa Estate Taxation Lawyers

    When an individual acts in a fiduciary capacity such as a Pa Executor of a Pa Last Will or a Pa Trustee of the financial assets of another person or entity, they have the responsibility of keeping accurate financial records. Those records should show how money was spent, invested or distributed while under the fiduciary’s care and control. Proper accounting can bring to light the mismanagement or bad investment of funds should an issue arise with an interested party.

    West Chester Pa Guardianships Lawyers

    The Pa Guardianship process can be filled with emotions. Realizing that a loved one is no longer capable of caring for his or her self can be difficult to accept. For the past twenty-five (25) years, Attorney Whalen has built a reputation for providing compassionate legal care for his clients, putting their needs and interests first while navigating emotionally trying circumstances.

    West Chester Pa Probate Law Lawyers

    The Pa Probate process, itself, is a very simple process. However, it is merely the beginning of the Pa Estate Administration (also known as the Pa Estate Settlement) process, which involves settling a decedent’s affairs, and can (and does) involve many, many other steps, depending on many, many other things.


    West Chester Pa Probate Attorneys Guide

    The West Chester Pa Probate Attorneys Guide is the core of this website. It consists of the best, most important articles, posts, and pages on this website. Their focus is to provide the best and most complete information on a particular topic, rather than to sell my services.

    John B. Whalen, Jr., JD., LL.M., is an AV Peer Review Rated Preeminent 5.0 and Avvo Rated 10.0 Superb (obtaining over 95 client reviews and peer endorsements) premier and prestigious Attorney and Counselor at Law. He is located at 696 Pont Reading Road Ardmore Pa 19003. He serves all surrounding counties, on all 7 days, from 9:00 AM to 10:00 PM, and on evenings, weekends, and holidays. He provides free initial consults all seven days, provides home visits, and provides flat fee structures. He can be reached by email at jw60297@me.com, and by telephone at 1-484-417-6244. He has amassed over 60 prestigious and premier professional awards and over 5000 client reviews and endorsements. Mr. Whalen has achieved the AV Peer Review Rated Preeminent award from Martindale, AV Peer Judicial Preeminent award, the Avvo Rated Superb 10.00 award, the Avvo Rated Top Lawyer award, the Clients’ Choice Award, and the Top One Percent (1%) award. He is the recipient of the Legum Magister Post-Doctorate Degree (LL.M.) in Taxation (from the Villanova University School of Law), a recipient of the American Jurisprudence Award in Wills, Trusts, and Estates (from the Widener University School of Law), and a recipient of the ABA-BNA Law Award for Academic Excellence (from the Widener University School of Law).

  • What Is A West Chester Pa Last Will?

    what-is-a-west-chester-pa-last-will-john-b-whalen-jr-esq

    What Is A West Chester Pa Last Will? – Bio

    John B. Whalen Jr Esq
    Serving West Chester Pa Probate Lawyers
    696 Pont Reading Road, Wayne, PA 19087

    What Is A West Chester Pa Last Will? – Video

    West Chester Pa Last Wills Lawyers

    A Will is an important document to execute in order to avoid disputes about how your assets will be divided when you die. The executor who administers the distribution of assets from your estate will allocate your possessions as you specified. You should periodically review your Will to make sure it is still relevant and accurate. Life changing events, such as the birth of a child or a marriage, may require amendments to the original document.

    West Chester Pa Probate Attorneys Guide

    The West Chester Pa Probate Attorneys Guide is the core of this website. It consists of the best, most important articles, posts, and pages on this website. Their focus is to provide the best and most complete information on a particular topic, rather than to sell my services.

    John B. Whalen, Jr., JD., LL.M., is an AV Peer Review Rated Preeminent 5.0 and Avvo Rated 10.0 Superb (obtaining over 95 client reviews and peer endorsements) premier and prestigious Attorney and Counselor at Law.

    Mr. Whalen is featured on AV Peer Review Rated Preeminent 5.0Avvo Rated 10.0 SuperbAvvoJustiaLawyersMartindaleNoloQuora, and Thumbtack.

    John is located at 696 Pont Reading Road Ardmore Pa 19003. He serves all surrounding counties, on all 7 days, from 9:00 AM to 10:00 PM, and on evenings, weekends, and holidays.
    Mr. Whalen provides free initial consults all seven days, provides home visits, and provides flat fee structures. He can be reached by email at jw60297@me.com, and by telephone at 1-484-417-6244.

    John has amassed over 60 prestigious and premier professional awards and over 5000 client reviews and endorsements. Mr. Whalen has achieved the AV Peer Review Rated Preeminent award from Martindale, AV Peer Judicial Preeminent award, the Avvo Rated Superb 10.00 award, the Avvo Rated Top Lawyer award, the Clients’ Choice Award, and the Top One Percent (1%) award.

    He is the recipient of the Legum Magister Post-Doctorate Degree (LL.M.) in Taxation (from the Villanova University School of Law), a recipient of the American Jurisprudence Award in Wills, Trusts, and Estates (from the Widener University School of Law), and a recipient of the ABA-BNA Law Award for Academic Excellence (from the Widener University School of Law).