Estate Planning

Estate planning is often thought of as limited to saving taxes for people of financial means. The broader view is that estate planning is necessary for every individual who wishes to direct the transfer of his or her assets on death or to manage those assets during an incapacity or incompetency.

Our attorneys have the experience necessary to develop comprehensive estate plans for our clients, recognizing each client’s unique needs and objectives. We work closely with every client to address these complex and sensitive issues with appropriate estate planning tools including Wills, Revocable and Irrevocable Trusts, Durable Powers of Attorney and Health Care Proxies and Living Wills.

Estate/Probate/Trust Administration

Probate administration involves the orderly transfer of a decedent’s assets as directed by his or her Will, or by the laws of intestacy as determined by Massachusetts law for those who did not have a Will at the time of death. Although much of the probate process is established by law, our experienced attorneys can provide you with the efficient management and understanding of the process that will provide peace of mind during a difficult time for the family and loved ones of a decedent. Our work in this area primarily involves petitioning the court for the appointment of the Personal Representative of an estate, obtaining allowance of the Will, compiling an inventory of estate assets, management of the estate, estate accounting, estate tax return preparation or supervision, obtaining allowance of accounts, and distribution of estate. We also assist clients with trust administration either as part of the estate/probate process or separately. When the occasion warrants it, we can also serve as trustees.

Guardianships & Conservatorships

When a family member or loved one becomes incapacitated or incompetent and has not made adequate arrangements by executing a health care proxy or durable power of attorney the only legal recourse is to seek the appointment of a guardian (of the person) or a conservator (only of the property) through the Probate Court. Eckel, Morgan & O’Connor LLC can provide the expertise and experience to make the process efficient and comprehensive, including assistance and referrals in arranging for care giver services and respite care.

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