Boca Raton Health & Financial Documents Attorney
Proudly Serving Clients of All Backgrounds in Florida
At SAMUELS WOOD PLLC, we provide informative legal services to clients
in Florida. We know the estate planning process can be complicated, and
the probate process can be even more stressful. That is why our lawyer
can guide you every step of the way. We can answer your questions, analyze
the facts of your situation, and determine an effective legal strategy
for your case.
Health Care Power of Attorney
A health care power of attorney allows you to appoint a specific person
you trust to make medical decisions for you if you become incapacitated.
The person you elect to serve in this role can choose which hospital you
are admitted to for treatment and can even file an application for public
benefits on your behalf.
Health Care Advance Directives
Advance directives include a living will and a health care surrogate designation.
The living will provides instructions for the type of life-prolonging
treatments you would want your doctor to provide, or not provide, if you
ever become incapacitated. The health care surrogate designation is a
legal document that you use to name a person you trust to serve as your
representative. This person has the legal authority to make medical decisions
on your behalf if you are unable to make them for yourself. Similar to
a living will, this document can also include detailed instructions about
the types of medical treatment that you would or would not want your physician
to provide in certain situations.
Understanding Probate in Florida
In Florida, there are 2 types of probate proceedings. Formal administration
is the traditional probate process, and summary administration is a simpler
and shorter process. It is generally used for estates that have a lower
value (under $75,000). Furthermore, if the decedent did not leave any
real estate or had limited assets that are exempt from creditors’
claims, the executor may be able to file a Distribution of Personal Property
Without Administration. This process is not supervised by the court system
and is only available in limited circumstances.
The administration process involves only the probate assets of the decedent.
Assets may include bank accounts, real estate titles, life insurance policies,
or other financial accounts the decedent leaves in a will. Probate is
usually filed by the will’s executor.
The probate process involves:
- Notifying creditors and beneficiaries
- Establishing the validity of the decedent’s will
- Identifying the decedent’s assets
- Paying the decedent’s remaining debts
- Distributing the decedent’s assets to named beneficiaries
The probate court process is essential to transfer the decedent’s
property and assets to beneficiaries, as well as to handle the decedent’s
financial affairs. Typically, probate proceedings are filed with the clerk
of the county court, in the county where the decedent resided at the time
of death. If the will is contested, or other complicated matters arise,
our firm can use our thorough knowledge of the legal system as you seek
a beneficial solution.