Offered by Dolan & Associates, P.C.
When Bill and Jane learned of Bill’s illness they sought legal advice. The lawyer they spoke with told them to put everything in joint tenancy, because “it is simple and avoids probate.” They weren’t comfortable with that advice and sought advice from a counseling-oriented attorney who took the time to learn more about them, their estate, and their goals. Bill’s primary objective was to protect Jane after he died. Under Bill’s plan, their savings, his life insurance, and the home would be put in trust. This would protect the assets for Jane and help Jane protect her own assets as well.
After Bill’s death, Jane began volunteer work to keep her mind off her loss and it became a fulfilling passion. She met David. They connected immediately, and she fell in love. He proposed. She accepted. Her family noticed that his focus suddenly turned toward a keen interest in her finances. Blindly in love, she did not.
Bill’s plan left his assets in trust for Jane. A requirement of receiving benefits was that upon remarriage she must obtain a prenuptial agreement protecting her assets. The assets Bill left her were protected, but she needed to take action to protect her own assets. David was enraged when she told him that she was required to have a prenuptial agreement to preserve the assets for her children. Realizing that half of the assets were held in trust, and that a prenuptial agreement would prevent him from receiving the balance upon her death, David lost interest in Jane. While Jane was sad, she also had a comforting feeling that Bill was still protecting her even after his death. Jane had wondered if the planning she and Bill had done was worth the effort. All doubts were now gone.
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