Estate Planning:

Just as your life and legacy are unique to you, your estate plan should be too. Lauren will take the time to listen to your story, and understand your goals and concerns. She will craft an estate plan that protects your family from unnecessary financial and emotional distress, and ensures your assets are protected and passed on according to your wishes.

An estate plan may include a Will, Trust, Power of Attorney, and an Advance Health Care Directive, amongst other planning tools. Having a customized estate plan is crucial because a one-size-fits-all form will not adequately address your unique life, legacy, family dynamics, and financial situation. Avoiding probate, reducing taxes, protecting your assets, planning for disability or incapacity, avoiding accidental disinheriting, and ensuring your assets are distributed according to your wishes are essential reasons to have an estate plan. Also, having an estate plan will greatly reduce the need to seek a conservatorship or guardianship in the future. Lauren uses her trust and probate litigation experience and preventive law knowledge to reduce the possibility that your estate plan may be subject to future disputes or conflicts.

Trust Administration:

You are the successor trustee of a trust, now what? Managing and administering the assets of a trust can be a daunting task. Lauren will help guide you through the Hawaii trust administration process to ease your stress and avoid costly errors.

Conservatorship:

Is your loved one unable to manage his or her financial affairs due to a physical or mental disability? Did your minor child inherit, or receive a sum of money in their individual name via a legal settlement or award? A conservatorship proceeding is a court proceeding during which an individual is appointed to manage the money of another. The appointed conservator has fiduciary duties and is responsible for filing annual reports with the court regarding the status of the protected person’s affairs.

Lauren will help you file the conservatorship proceeding, guide you through the process, and advise you regarding the subsequent administration of the conservatorship in an efficient and cost-effective manner.

Guardianship:

A guardianship proceeding is a court proceeding where a court appoints someone to protect the interests of an individual who is unable to act for him or herself by reason of being: 1) a minor; or 2) an incapacitated person. Once appointed, a guardian is required to file annual reports with the court regarding the protected person’s status.

Lauren will help you file the guardianship proceeding, guide you through the process, and advise you regarding the subsequent administration of the guardianship in an efficient and cost-effective manner.

Probate:

Probate is a legal court proceeding that takes place after someone dies. During this proceeding, the decedent’s estate and assets are consolidated and transferred pursuant to the decedent’s Last Will and Testament. If the decedent did not have a valid Will, the estate is transferred pursuant to the laws of the State of Hawaii regarding intestate succession. There are different types of probate proceedings and certain estates may not need to be probated at all, particularly if the decedent had an estate plan involving a properly funded trust.

If your loved one has passed away and you are unsure of what legally needs to be done next, give Lauren a call and she will guide you through the probate process.