Do you charge for an initial consultation?
Yes we do. Our belief is that we are able to provide a great deal of information in that first visit, and that information is of value to you, not only to learn about the law in the particular area of your concern, but also so that you can meet with Attorney Grosskopf to determine that your working arrangement will be mutually beneficial. For Bankruptcy and Debtor-Creditor consultations we charge a $50.00 initial ½ hour consultation, which applies towards the total fee, if you retain us for further matters. In all other matters, we charge a $200.00 initial 1 hour consultation, which again applies towards the total fee, if you wish to retain us.
Should I get in to see you right away?
In many of our cases we will send you a questionnaire to fill out, prior to the initial consultation. It’s our experience that the use of our time at the initial consultation will be that much more valuable and productive for both you and the attorney, if that questionnaire has been largely completed ahead of time. It also helps you know what kind of documents to bring with you, to that consultation.
Do you accept Credit Cards?
Yes we accept Master Card and Visa.
My parents need an Elder Law Attorney, but who should come to that first appointment?
We prefer to meet with the parents in most cases, and we will assume in most cases the parent will become our client. In some cases, that is not realistic, where, for example, the parent has dementia or has other disabilities that prevent them from effectively participating in the meeting. In many cases, the parent prefers to have a son or daughter or even a larger group of the family come with her or her to the appointment; while we’re happy to accommodate the wishes of that client and the family, it may become necessary to meet with the parent/client alone, at some point. This is for the protection for everyone involved.
Are there alternatives to Probate?
There are many alternatives to Probate. These can include Revocable Living Trusts, Transfer on Death Deeds, Life Estate Deeds, Beneficiary Designations and Marital Property Agreements. There isn’t a one size fits all answer. It depends on your unique situation.
What is a Supplemental Needs Trust?
Supplemental Needs Trusts sometimes called Special Needs Trusts are a generic term for the types of trust that can be set up for individuals who are disabled. Both Federal and State Laws permit that Trusts can be established for the benefit of these individuals, and yet those individuals can retain their eligibility for Governmental Benefits. The money in trust can then be used to supplement or pay for things extra or beyond that which is provided by the Government Benefits. There are several distinctive types of these trusts, and which one works best in your situation must be carefully evaluated by someone familiar with these types of trusts.
Can a name someone as a life insurance beneficiary with a verbal agreement that he/she will use that to pay the funeral bill and divide the rest between the family?
We see cases like this all the time, and unfortunately the beneficiary often refuses or has forgotten about the agreement to pay the funeral bill and divide the monies with everyone else. There is no enforceable agreement in that situation. There are much better options available.
Isn’t Estate Planning expensive?
No the failure to do Estate Planning can be expensive. With proper Estate Planning, often the costs can be far less than the cost savings and in some cases tax savings can be enormous.
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