While few of us want to consider the end of life, it is one of those inevitabilities, regardless of how we feel about it. Most of us want to be assured that after we are gone, our loved ones are protected. Having a will is one way we can do that. A will is an essential estate planning device that can help you avoid the probate process in Houston. Regardless of your age or your financial means, having a will can help protect your assets – through trusts and other estate planning tools – should the unforeseeable happen.
Houston wills lawyer Whitney L. Thompson has dedicated her career to helping families plan for the future. Comprehensive estate planning is critical in today’s world, protecting families from life’s challenges. This is the role Houston estate planning, probate, and trusts attorneys fulfill. Taking the simple step of creating a will today can save families from a great deal of pain and heartache later.
Having a will, also called a last will and testament, is important at any stage of life when you have family or assets of any kind. A will enables you to leave property to people or organizations of your choice, establish a legal guardian for your minor children, and name a trusted executor to oversee the distribution of your estate after your death. While simple wills can be practical for most estates, the law also allows for the creation of wills that can help with tax planning or include built-in trusts.
Without a legally valid will in place, your estate may go into a long probate process and the state will determine how your property is distributed. Through probate, the state will also decide who will care for your children, and any other matters concerning your estate when you die. Having a will ensures that your estate is distributed in the way that you want, not in accordance with the laws of intestacy. With a will in place, you can have peace of mind knowing that your property will be distributed and your loved ones will be cared for in a way that you would want should the unexpected happen.
At the Law Office of Whitney L. Thompson, we ensure that your wishes are protected if something should happen to you. Houston wills lawyer Whitney Thompson has spent her career helping individuals and families navigate their future in the face of the unforeseen. She and her team are dedicated to clients who want to protect their loved ones in the face of future obstacles.
The Law Office of Whitney L. Thompon, a Houston estate planning firm takes the role of helping families plan ahead and ensure their loved ones are well-provided for after they pass away.
To learn more about Texas estate planning, call the Law Office of Whitney L. Thompson at (281) 214-0173.
Under the law in Texas, if you die without a will, you will have died “intestate.” Your assets will be distributed to your spouse and closest relatives based on state laws. Intestacy laws in Texas distribute property beginning with your spouse and your children, then continuing with parents and grandchildren until more distant blood relatives are exhausted. If no living relatives can be located, then the state may have the right to take your property.
While intestate succession has been designed to consider the closest family members and children first when an individual dies in Texas, it doesn’t provide for an individual’s specific wishes. You may want to leave part of your Texas estate to a close family friend or an organization. You may wish to have a close family friend as a guardian of your children. But these choices will not be considered by the court unless there is a valid will in place.
Houston estate lawyers have the task of helping people prepare wills, trusts, or other estate planning processes in Houston, Texas. An experienced lawyer may also be able to help families go through the probate process. Speaking with skilled estate attorneys may be able to give you an insight into what your options are. Contact our firm today to schedule an appointment with a skilled Texas lawyer to plan your estate.
As a parent, one of the most important responsibilities we have is planning the well-being and future of our children. However, if you die while your children are still minors, without wills or trusts in place, Texas laws will also determine who will care for them when you are gone.
Under the law in the state of Texas, should you die without a will, your minor children will be raised by the surviving parent. But what happens if both parents are no longer alive in Houston? The law regarding state intestate succession will then look to a grandparent. If more than one grandparent is still alive, the court will make a determination based on what they feel is in the best interests of the child. If no grandparent is alive, then the courts will consider the next closest living relative.
Family relations can be complicated especially under the law. You may not have wished for a relative to be the guardian of your children. There may be family members you would not want your children to be raised by or would provide an environment that you would not want for them. But without a valid will in place, intestate succession laws and the courts will make these determinations. Especially when you are the parent of minor children, a will is critical to ensure the care of your children should something happen to you.
Speaking to an experienced attorney about planning your estate is very important to ensure that your loved ones avoid probate in the event of your passing away. A skilled attorney who is well-versed in estate law may be able to explain wills and trusts to you and how they can provide your loved ones with the protection they need in the future.
Probate attorney Whitney L. Thompson may be able to help. Contact our Houston, TX law firm today at (281) 214-0173 to speak with an estate lawyer to plan your estate.
Naming the executor of your estate is one of the other important considerations of a will. Your executor should be a trusted individual who will be responsible for carrying out the responsibilities of administering your estate.
If you die without a will, the court will be required to name an administrator to carry out these duties. This is often one of your primary heirs based on intestate succession. Unfortunately, without a valid will in place, the court cannot consider your wishes, and your executor may not be someone you would have chosen. This is why it is important to speak to a skilled attorney when planning your estate.
Estate planning lawyers help families understand the importance of planning for the future. They may be able to help you know the difference between wills and trusts and how they may be able to ensure your loved one’s future. Contact our law firm in Houston, TX to speak with an experienced probate and estate planning attorney today.
While there are many online options for creating a will in Houston, a legally effective will is more than filling in a simple online form. If your will is not drafted and executed properly, it may not be recognized by the probate court after your death or may result in disputes between family members.
A will is a legal document that carries out essential estate matters after your death, and its contents are important. Each state has specific requirements that a will must meet in order to be legally enforceable. As your will passes through the probate process in Houston, it can be challenged if there are questions regarding its validity. Having a skilled Houston wills lawyer draft your will ensures that all legal requirements are met and all financial and estate matters are considered.
An estate planning attorney has extensive knowledge of probate law and complex financial issues. Your lawyer will be able to look at all aspects of your assets and finances to ensure that your estate and loved ones are protected upon your death. Every detail can be legally addressed so you can have peace of mind that your property will be distributed according to your wishes after you are gone.
Contact the Law Office of Whitney L. Thompson at (281) 214-0173 to speak with an experienced estate planning lawyer today.
To ensure a Will is enforceable in Houston, it must meet strict requirements. This makes it crucial to enlist the services of a knowledgeable and experienced Houston Wills lawyer.
One important requirement is testamentary capacity, which means the person executing the Will (the testator) must be legally capable of forming the Will. Hiring a Houston Will attorney can help avoid capacity issues, as they can ensure the testator is capable when signing the Will.
Additionally, the Will must be properly drafted and executed to avoid the risk of it being held invalid in probate court. In Texas, a Will is considered valid only if it is in writing and signed in the presence of two witnesses. Oral Wills may be valid under very limited circumstances in Texas, but only if they were made before September 1, 2007.
Speaking to an experienced attorney for estate planning in Houston can help you understand the importance of making sure that the requirements for creating a will are satisfied. At the Law Office of Whitney L. Thompson, estate planning attorney Whitney L. Thompson has years of experience working with probate, wills, and trusts. Attorney Thompson may be able to provide the legal advice you need when drafting a will.
Contact our law firm today to schedule a consultation for your estate planning needs.
In Houston, Texas, it’s not necessary to get your will notarized for it to be legally binding. However, you have the option to make your will “self-proving” by including a self-proving affidavit. The self-proving affidavit is a document signed by your witnesses that confirms your identity, ownership of the will, and that you were of sound mind when you signed it. The affidavit must then be witnessed and signed by a notary, who is authorized to confirm the identities and competencies of the signatories.
When someone passes away, their will is taken to the probate court, and the court usually contacts the witnesses to verify that the document is real. This process can be time-consuming, especially if a witness lives far or has passed away. But with a self-proving affidavit, the court may accept the will without having to reach out to the witnesses.
If you want to ensure that your Houston Will is self-proving and the probate process is expedited, consider speaking with an experienced Texas wills lawyer. At The Law Office of Whitney L. Thompson, Houston wills lawyer Whitney L. Thompson and our team of legal professionals may be able to help you draft a self-proving will that meets all the necessary legal requirements and ensures that your wishes are carried out smoothly.
Life changes, and so should your will. You should revisit your estate planning documents any time there has been a birth, death, divorce, or other important change in your life or your family.
Your will is a valuable estate planning device that allows you to choose how your property will be passed on after your death. But many individuals put these important matters off for “someday.” If you own any assets, you want to be the one who decides how they will pass to others once you are gone, not the state. Making a will is a simple step in ensuring your wishes will be considered.
Estate planning can be simple or complex, depending on the unique needs of each family. It is important not to leave these matters to chance. At the Law Office of Whitney L. Thompson, we take the time to understand your wishes and needs so you can rest assured that your property will be passed to your heirs the way you choose.
Houston wills lawyer Whitney L. Thompson and her team believe that every family deserves the peace of mind that a comprehensive estate plan can offer.
If you have questions about an existing will or would like to have a will created, call us at (281) 214-0173, or contact us through our online contact form to schedule a consultation.