The Things We Say

We talk about what’s important to keep your family protected. The ones you love.

Estate Planning Is Not What You Think It Is

Estate planning is not filling out a form, entering information into a database, and signing documents. Effective personalized estate planning must include lengthy and comprehensive conversations with a lawyer who dedicates their practice to estate planning.  A good estate planning lawyer will help you spot all types of risks, from being underinsured to caring for…

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3 Reasons to Avoid Probate

When you pass away, your family may need to visit a probate court in order to claim their inheritance. This can happen if you own property (like a house, car, bank account, investment account, or other asset) in only your name. Although having a will is a good basic form of planning, a will does not avoid…

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Does Your Estate Plan Reflect Your Values?

Personalization is the key to an effective estate plan. The best estate plan is one that reflects your goals and values, minimizes risk for the beneficiaries, and addresses the specific circumstances of your life.   I recently met with a potential client who created his estate plan just after his son was born—he had every…

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Do Your Parents Have an Estate Plan?

A Conversation Worth Having With the holiday season just around the corner, why not take some time to have a friendly chat with your loved ones about estate planning? The holidays can be both a tricky and a great time to talk. You need to know whether or not your parents have put together an…

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Secure Your Family’s Future

Secure Your Family’s Future: The Vital Importance of Estate Planning for Young Families Starting a family is a wonderful journey filled with joy and love. However, it also brings new responsibilities and considerations. Estate planning is not just for the wealthy or the elderly; it’s a crucial step for parents with young children. Here’s why:…

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Estate Planning and Divorce

Most divorce professionals believe estate planning is something to do “after the divorce is final.”  But what happens if a divorcing person loses capacity or dies before their divorce is final?  Que horror stories!  Engaging in estate planning during the preliminary phase of divorce (pre-petition) is optimal, and De Fonte Law PC works with clients…

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Estate Planning is a Social Justice Issue

At De Fonte Law PC, we firmly believe that estate planning is a social justice issue. A family that doesn’t have much can lose everything if they don’t have a personalized estate plan. Estate planning is about who you love, who you trust, and who is counting on you. We all need to give people…

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Advance Health Care Directive for Dementia

This topic really hit home when clients told us of an elderly auntie with Alzheimer’s, who loved to cook and attend parties, she was diagnosed with diabetes. This led to a family fight over whether to treat her and take away her food or provide her with palliative care and focus on her quality of…

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The Danger in Online DIY Estate Plans

Form Generation Services Recently, we’ve had new clients showed us the trust that they had created with an online form generation service (think Legal Zoom, Rocket Lawyer, Suze Orman).  They believed that they had taken care of each other and their children adequately because all the marketing led them to believe that estate planning is…

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Estate Planning for Couples

Estate Planning is for Lovers Advice columnist Ann Landers once observed that “love is friendship that has caught fire.” If that’s true, there are thousands of ways for that blaze to unfold. For many Americans, such devotion and passion do not need to be neatly formalized as marriage.  Estate planning for married couples can seem…

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Legal Considerations for the New Graduate

De Fonte Law PC loves working with young clients to create personalized health care directives, durable powers of attorney, and simple wills for young adults.  We will talk to them about the importance of insurance (umbrella, auto, and renters) and about financial literacy. Our heart-forward holistic approach means that we go beyond the four corners…

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Working with the LGBTQIA+ Community

The LGBT+ community has demonstrated that estate planning is foundational. Giving authority to people you trust to care for you when you cannot care for yourself. Protecting your partner or spouse’s privacy upon your death. Providing for your children (especially when adoption was prohibited and the laws of intestacy did not apply). Providing for your…

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Five Tips for Every Homeowner

Owning real estate in California is not a simple matter. In the Bay Area’s highly competitive and quickly appreciating market, homeowners often make mistakes. Have you done all you can to protect your home and family? Are you maximizing the benefits of real estate ownership, or are you putting what and who you love at…

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What A Will Won’t Do:

Only a revocable trust avoids probate, protects privacy and promotes your values. In California, a will is public on death, provides no control from the grave,  and no protection for the beneficiary – exposing your loved ones to creeps, creditors, and predators! Transferring your assets to an up-to-date revocable trust is the best way to…

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