Law Practice

Legal Services Built on Trust

Life and Estate Planning for Families and Individuals – – Wills, Living and Revocable Trusts, Probate, Reduction of Estate Taxes

I am an estate planning attorney in Lehi, Utah. I have had over thirty-five years’ experience exclusively in estate planning and trust and probate administration. Typically, I serve clients having a net worth of $100,000 to $10 million. My practice is a very personal service-based practice. I serve clients who want excellent quality estate planning but don’t want to pay for the fancy (expensive) trimmings of a large law firm. I focus my practice exclusively on estate planning and administration and personal attention to my client. Free consultations are available.
Sincerely,

Merrilee A. Boyack, Attorney at Law

Licensed to practice by California & Utah State Supreme Courts. 

Practicing Law Since 1985


Law Offices of Merrilee A. Boyack
Practicing in Utah & California
2847 N 50 W Lehi, UT 84043
UT Phone: 801-558-4656
CA Phone: 858-748-6703
Email: Law@Boyacks.com

E-Mails or other communications to or from this website may not be secure and are not deemed to be privileged or confidential communications. You may contact the Firm Administrator with questions or comments regarding this website. The principal and sole offices of the Law Offices of Merrilee A. Boyack are at the address below. The Firm does not practice law in or accept clients from any jurisdiction outside the States of Utah and California.We request that you carefully review and consider our Website Disclaimer and Disclosure Statement .

Estate Planning General Information:

What is estate planning?
Estate planning is the process to set up legal arrangements that would meet your needs if you were to be disabled or to die. Typically, these plans include a minimization of tax impacts and minimize court involvement. They can include the preparation of a revocable living trust, wills, community property agreements, nomination of guardian, irrevocable trusts and other documents necessary to prepare for death. Preparation for disability may include durable powers of attorney for management and for health care.Bottom line, estate planning is protecting your family and being prepared.

Do I need an attorney? Is it expensive?
It is always wise to consult with an attorney on these matters. I offer a FREE initial consultation that will review what you need to do and what I recommend. Due to the complexity of estate administration and the federal estate tax law, this is not an area to enter uninformed. An estate plan prepared by an attorney will offer you peace of mind and a quality that is well worth it.

What is an estate?
An estate is anything you own or have rights to and may include your home, bank accounts, retirement accounts, life insurance, inheritable assets, etc.Should I have an estate plan?
All adults should have an estate plan. It is particularly crucial if you have children, own assets approaching $100,000, own any real estate, have life insurance, have any health care concerns, or are married or have children.. In short, it’s worth a free consultation to see if you need one.

Trusts and Trustees
What is a Trust?
A Trust is an interest in property held by one person for the benefit of another. A Trust involves three persons: the Grantor, the Trustee and the Beneficiary.

How is a Trust created?
A Trust is created when the property owner (the Grantor) transfers title and certain incidents of ownership in the property to another person (the Trustee) for the benefit or use of a third party (the Beneficiary).
For the Trust to constitute an effective transfer of title and ownership, it must comply with all requirements of law. Your legal advisor can help you determine if you need a Trust in your situation.

What  kind of property can I place in a Trust?
You have a lot of options. A Trust can hold securities, such as common stock and mutual funds. You can also place certain real estate and other types of property into a Trust. Your attorney or other advisor can guide you in selecting property that is appropriate in your situation.

How do I select a Trustee?
The Trustee should be someone you can rely upon to act in the best interests of the Beneficiary of the Trust. The person can be a family member, an advisor or even a trustworthy friend.
In selecting the Trustee, you should look for someone who has sound judgment, good business sense, integrity and stability. A Trustee also can be a bank or other financial institution, if it has trust powers and otherwise qualifies.

Are Trustees compensated for the services they render?
The Trustee generally is entitled to reasonable compensation for services rendered. If you are setting up the Trust, you generally can set the compensation, or you can provide that the Trustee shall serve without compensation. This is often the case when a family member is named as the Trustee.

Living Trusts
What is a Living Trust?
A Living Trust, or inter vivos trust, takes effect during the Grantor’s lifetime. The Trustee holds legal title to the property for the benefit of the Beneficiary. A Living Trust is a type of Revocable Trust, as it generally can be revoked or cancelled during the Grantor’s lifetime.
A revocable Living Trust is useful to manage your property in the future, especially if you are elderly, ill or incapacitated, or likely to become incapacitated in the future.

Can a Trust be revoked after it is created?
Yes, sometimes. Certain Trusts can be rescinded or canceled after they are created. In a Living Trust or a Revocable Trust, the Grantor (the person who creates the Trust) reserves the right to revoke the Trust during his or her lifetime.

Should I try to avoid probate by creating a Living Trust?
Yes! A Living Trust is an excellent planning tool to avoid the high cost of a probate proceeding.

Wills
What is a Will?
A Will is an instrument by which a person makes a disposition or gift of his or her property. The gifts do not take effect until the time of the testator’s death. To be a valid Will, the Will must meet the requirements and formalities of state law.

What is an Executor ?
The Executor is the person you name to carry out the directions in your Will after your death. After your death, the Executor must be appointed by the Court before he or she can act. In your Will, you may designate the person you wish for the Court to appoint as Executor. You may wish to name one or two successor Executors, to act in the event your first choice does not or cannot serve.

What if I want to cancel or change my Will after it is signed?
Do not write on your will or mark through any words. Even small changes or markings could void the entire will. If you wish to change your will, we can help you implement the updates without invalidating your will. If you wish to cancel or change your will, you should be as diligent in seeking legal advice as you were when you created your will.
There are at least five family changes where updating your Will is advisable:
1. Birth or adoption of a child or grandchild.
2. Marriage.
3. Divorce (either your own or a family member’s).
4. Death or disability of a beneficiary under your will.
5. Death or disability of your Executor.

Does having a will mean that my estate will NOT have to go through probate?
No! Wills do not by themselves avoid probate!

Who will get my property if I die without a Will?
If you die intestate (without making a Will), you do not get to choose who will receive your probate assets. The state government decides for you, and each state’s laws are different. If you die intestate, the persons who inherit from you depend upon whether you are married or single, whether you have children, and other factors. It also may depend upon the nature of your property.


Law Offices of Merrilee A. Boyack
Practicing in Utah & California
2847 N 50 W Lehi, UT 84043
UT Phone: 801-558-4656
CA Phone: 858-748-6703
Email: Law@Boyacks.com

E-Mails or other communications to or from this website may not be secure and are not deemed to be privileged or confidential communications. You may contact the Firm Administrator with questions or comments regarding this website. The principal and sole offices of the Law Offices of Merrilee A. Boyack are at the address below. The Firm does not practice law in or accept clients from any jurisdiction outside the States of Utah and California.We request that you carefully review and consider our Website Disclaimer and Disclosure Statement .