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Estates & Estate Plans

Probate & Estate Administration · Living Trust Estate Planning · Special Needs Trusts

Probate & Estate Administration

When a loved one passes away, families are suddenly faced with many difficult tasks and issues.

What is the proper procedure for paying the deceased’s bills?
What should be done with the real estate?
How are the assets sold or distributed?
How to handle difficult relatives and delicate family issues?

We have over thirty years of experience in handling both simple and complex estates.

We will…

  • Meet with members of the family to gather information, explain the necessary tasks ahead, and answer questions.
  • Prepare the required documentation and accompany you to the courthouse to be sworn in as executor. This begins the Probate process.
  • Collect and retitle assets.
  • Prepare and file the Pennsylvania Inheritance and Federal Estate tax returns.
  • Assist you in the payment of debts and in the distribution of assets.
  • Prepare Estate Settlement Agreements and formal Accounts so that you are protected from all liability and ensure that all beneficiaries receive full disclosure.

Living Trust Estate Planning

What is a Living Trust?

Living Trusts are one of the most common estate planning tools in use today.

A Living Trust enables your family to avoid the need for a probate administration upon your death, thereby avoiding the delays and substantial legal costs involved in a probate administration. Jeffrey F. Dorko has been the premier Living Trust estate planning attorney in Berks County for over twenty years having prepared thousands of Living Trust Estate Plans. Other estate planning documents include Wills, Powers of Attorney, Living Wills and Healthcare Powers of Attorney.

Who needs a Living Trust?

Almost anyone with assets of $100,000 or more can benefit from having a living trust. Estates of $100,000 or more are often subject to probate, which can cost up to 5% of the estate’s value in court and legal fees.

Avoiding Probate

Living Trusts avoid probate, and are completely private. The courts have no control over the Trust’s assets, and do not tie up the assets in a lengthy and costly probate process. More sophisticated living trusts can be structured for more complex family situations. Remarried spouses with children from a previous marriage can use an advanced estate plan using a revocable living trust to ensure their children receive their proper inheritance.

Special Needs Trusts

If you have a loved one with special needs, whether a child, grandchild, sibling or other relative, we realize how important it is to you that they are taken care of both physically and financially. We know how the wrong legal documents can strip a person with a disability of their much-needed government benefits. We have helped many families establish an estate plan that gives them the peace of mind of knowing their loved ones will be properly cared for.

Contact us today for help with your loved one’s estate.

Thank you!