Larry A. Harman, P.C. provides a full range of services for wills: drafting, review, amendment, revocation, execution and probate. We provide reliable guidance for testators (those making wills) and executors (those probating wills). Our experience in the probate court, resolving issues related to the validity of wills, enables us to provide practical advice for testators from all walks of life. Similarly, our work in the drafting 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, Larry A. Harman, P.C. can simplify many complex aspects of the tasks before you. We offer pertinent and personal legal advice to obtain the results you need in a timely manner with the least stress possible.
Your advance directive (or living will) sets the parameters for medical intervention should you become incapacitated. This assures that when you are most vulnerable, your wishes will be honored.
Your last will provides the opportunity to distribute your property, establish care for your children and otherwise express your wishes upon your death. A will is necessary if you intend to leave property to a person or entity other than a blood relative, such as a domestic partner, a friend or a charity. The probate court approves a will if it finds the document was executed intentionally and freely by a person of sound mind, is written in clear, unambiguous language and is signed, witnessed and duly notarized. If you die without a will, the court determines how your property is distributed, who cares for your children and even what happens to your pet – making decisions that might not reflect your desires.
Drafting valid wills to ensure your intentions are honored.
As your life changes, so might your estate plan. You should update your will periodically throughout your life. We draft valid codicils that address changes in your financial situation, marital status, number of children, philanthropic interests and general lifestyle decisions.
If you have minor children, your will allows you to make decisions about their future care. Naming a guardian is especially important if you are a single parent, but even married couples must consider the remote possibility of perishing in a common incident. If you do not name a guardian, the court will appoint one whose decisions may be in conflict with your parenting goals. You can also make arrangements for your pets’ care in your will, even naming a guardian to assume ownership.
Most executors have never probated a will; many are surprised to learn the decedent’s will named them as the responsible party. We provide indispensable service for executors who have no prior experience in the probate court on matters that include:
Executors can easily make mistakes due to inexperience, stress and hasty decisions. This can be costly, as executors can be held personally liable for beneficiaries’ losses. We guide executors through every step of the probate process, with reliable, detailed advice, so you can settle the testator’s estate as efficiently, quickly and easily as possible.
We assist executors with the arduous process of collecting, valuing, protecting and liquidating the assets of the estate. When needed, we can call upon accountants, financial advisors, real estate agents, property managers and other professionals to assist with executor duties and can access expert opinions about unique assets such as antiques, rare books, automobiles and other collectibles for accurate valuation, management and possible sale.
Even in apparently straightforward estate cases, there are sometimes disputes between disappointed beneficiaries and the will’s executor. When representing the executor or the estate’s fiduciary, we will demonstrate the utmost professionalism in negotiations and in the courtroom. Whether the issue is a will challenge or an accusation of mismanagement of estate assets, we advocate vigorously for the testator’s estate and the executor.