Midland Estate Planning Lawyer
Areas of Concentration
Shaun devotes a significant portion of his practice to creating and implementing estate plans that accomplish key client objectives regarding the disposition of an individual's estate, while working to preserve the estate through maximization of credits and exemptions under federal estate and gift tax laws. This includes the preparations of wills and the creation and modification of trusts as estate planning tools.
Probate and Estate Administration
A significant portion of Shaun's practice is dedicated to advising both fiduciaries and beneficiaries relating to the probate of decedent's estates. This includes supporting surviving spouses regarding their statutory rights and advising fiduciaries, executors, and administrators regarding the disposition of decedents' estates in both contested and uncontested matters.
In addition to original probate proceedings in Texas and New Mexico, Shaun also handles ancillary probates of non-resident decedents who owned property in Texas or New Mexico.
Trust Administration and Representation
Shaun often counsels all parties of the Trust: grantor, beneficiary, and trustee, in the rights and obligations of trust management and distributions.
Shaun began his career in the firm's litigation section. As such, Shaun is utilized as a resource and often works on various trust, estate, and fiduciary litigation. He often handles will contests and is practiced at working collaboratively with litigation attorneys and tax professionals to explain the availability and possible effects of all manner of legal disputes pertaining to trusts and estates.
In addition to planning for the preservation and distribution of assets, as an integral part of planning, Shaun assists clients with making decisions related to their care and the management of their property in a period of incapacity before the need arises, including: Directives to Physicians (Living Wills), Medical Powers of Attorney, Statutory Durable Powers of Attorney and Revocable (Living) Trusts. Additionally, Shaun advises clients about the option of pre-need guardian designations including care for minors.
Shaun's practice also includes assisting clients in obtaining and management of guardian of incapacitated adults and minors, including guardian of the estate and guardian of the person. Shaun is versed in guardianship alternatives which must be considered prior to the creation of a guardianship, including powers of attorney and court created management trusts. He is also certified, in accordance with the Texas Estates Code, as eligible to be appointed as an attorney for an applicant or a court appointed attorney in a guardianship proceeding.
Family Wealth Transfers
Shaun also represents families planning for the orderly transfer of family assets by assisting business owners with developing and implementing succession plans to help family businesses thrive after the founding generation retires or passes away. Including representation of family offices. He counsels clients on the equitable division of estates. Shaun also commonly advises owners of oil and gas interests regarding transfer techniques designed to avoid further fractionalization of interests over time.
Shaun's practice also includes assisting clients with lawful asset protection techniques, including pre-marital and marital property agreements, transmutation agreements, gun trusts, separate property trusts and entities, including family limited partnerships, limited partnerships, and limited liability companies.
How do I choose a lawyer?
Consider the following:
- Comfort Level
- - Are you comfortable telling the lawyer personal information? Does the lawyer seem interested in solving your problem?
- - How long has the lawyer been in practice? Has the lawyer worked on other cases similar to yours?
- - How are the lawyer's fees structured - hourly or flat fee? Can the lawyer estimate the cost of your case?
- - Is the lawyer's office conveniently located?
Not sure what questions to ask a lawyer?
Here are a few to get you started:
- How long have you been in practice?
- How many cases like mine have you handled?
- How often do you settle cases out of court?
- What are your fees and costs?
- What are the next steps?
Want to check lawyer discipline?
It is always a good idea to research your lawyer prior to hiring. Every state has a disciplinary organization that monitors attorneys, their licenses, and consumer complaints. By researching lawyer discipline you can:
- Ensure the attorney is currently licensed to practice in your state
- Gain an understanding of his or her historical disciplinary record, if any.
- Determine the seriousness of complaints/issues which could range from late bar fees to more serious issues requiring disciplinary action.