Wills, Trusts and Power of Attorney

Washington laws on valid wills and trusts are very strict. For example, the requirements for valid execution (creation) of a will require two competent and disinterested witnesses, the will must be in writing and signed by (or at the direction of) the person making the will. Washington does not allow for holographic (entirely handwritten and only signed by the maker of the will, or testator). And except for very limited situations, oral wills are invalid. The effect of an invalid will can result in distribution of assets in a way entirely different than what was intended, as assets of a person who dies without a valid will pass by Washington’s Intestacy Statute. This statute sets out formulas for what relative gets what portion of the estate; in some instances, your assets may not go to anyone, and will escheat to the State of Washington

You have probably heard of a trust, but here is the definition: A trust is a fiduciary relationship with respect to property where one person (trustee) holds legal title to trust property subject to enforceable equitable rights in another (beneficiary). The trust is created by a person called a “settlor.” Trusts can serve many important purposes: providing for one’s spouse, children, medical needs, a charitable cause, or maybe even shielding assets from creditors. You can even create one to ensure your pet is taken care of after you are gone. A trust can be used to ensure that even your assets are protected to an extent that your great-grandchildren are provided for. As with wills, there are strict rules on establishing (creating) a trust; don’t risk your wishes being defeated.

Ensure that your wishes are upheld. The lawyers of Ashbach Law offices have been drafting wills and trusts for over 34 combined years. Contact the knowledgeable and experienced lawyers at Ashbach Law Offices (360-659-4950) for the will or trust you want and need.

A Power of Attorney is a document where by one person (giver) allows another (receiver) to manage financial or healthcare decisions in case the giver is unable. This prevents problems where rent or other bills have to be paid, legal obligations need to be carried out, or important end-of-life decisions need to be made. A Power of Attorney grants that ability to specified persons and guides the receiver in making such decisions. A Power of Attorney may be written to become effective and be terminated on the happening of essentially any specified event. A Power of Attorney is a necessity for anyone about to undergo a risky medical procedure, someone who is traveling overseas for a long period of time, or someone nearing the end of their life.

To have an effective Power of Attorney for healthcare or financial purposes, contact the experienced and knowledgeable lawyers of Ashbach Law Offices today.