Do I Need a Will?

Yes. If you do not have a will, the State has laws that will determine who will receive your property. If you do not want the State to decide who receives your property, you should make a will.

Yes, if you have minor children and want to appoint someone as their guardian. If you die without a will, the Court will not know your preference for a guardian of your minor children.

Yes, if you want to decide who will administer your estate. If you die without a will, anyone (including your creditors) can be appointed as your personal representative.

What is a Living Will?

A Living Will is a document that tells your doctor that you do not want to have certain medical procedures performed under certain circumstances. With a Living Will you can appoint a person who can speak to your doctor if you are unable to speak for yourself. Without a Living Will, a doctor may not know your wishes and may feel compelled to perform unwanted medical procedures. Note that a living will is also called an Advance Health Care Directive.

What is a Durable Power of Attorney?

A Durable Power of Attorney is a document that allows you to designate someone to act for you. It is called “Durable” because is survives incapacity, either physical or mental. Signing a Durable Power of Attorney can eliminate the expense, effort and need for a Guardianship.

What is Probate?

Probate means the acceptance of a will by the Register of Wills. It also means the process of transferring property from one party to another upon death and the tax associated with this transfer of property. We will be happy to review your estate and explain how to keep probate costs down.

Will my family need to pay tax upon my death?

There are many types of taxes, but when someone dies, the taxes that are most important are the estate taxes and inheritance taxes.

Estate taxes are paid to the federal government, and sometimes to the State of Delaware. Inheritance taxes are paid to the State.

Does your firm handle other areas of law?

We have almost 20 attorneys in Delaware who handle most legal problems, including Personal Injury, Social Security, Workman’s Compensation, Divorce, Custody and Bankruptcy. Be sure to watch our firm’s lawyers on “DE Law”, shown Monday evenings at 9:30 p.m. and Friday evenings at 8:00 p.m. on Channel 28. We have offices in New Castle County, Kent County and Sussex County.