Trusted advice for your most important decisions.
Estate planning. Simplified.
Serving New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
Wills, Trusts, Powers of Attorney, Retirement & Tax Planning, Special Needs Planning
Probate Applications, Trust Administration, Gift, Inheritance & Estate Tax Returns
Guardianship, Conservatorship, Adoption - court actions related to assets and planning
Trusted Advice & Perspective
Protect what matters most. Jessica J. Sauer, Esq. is an experienced attorney focused exclusively on estate planning, administration, and court actions related to protecting and managing assets for loved ones (including guardianship, conservatorship, and adoption).
Based in the greater Princeton area, Jessica is dedicated to serving clients throughout New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
Frequently Asked Questions
A Last Will and Testament speaks for you after your death - directing who your assets should pass to and how to the extent allowed by law.
A Will allows you to:
- Appoint an executor;
- Control who will inherit from you (and under what terms); and
- Appoint a guardian for your minor children
Developing an estate plan that takes your wishes, assets, and goals into account can help minimize the expenses associated with the administration of your estate.
The short answer is yes.
In addition to a Will, almost everyone should have powers of attorney in place so that they can control who will be able to make medical and financial decisions for them if they need help. These documents should also include a "living will" for end of life decision making.
At the Sauer Law Firm LLC, we frequently prepare a "Simple Will Package" for clients that includes a:
- Last Will and Testament;
- Health Care Power of Attorney (which includes a "living will"); and a
- Financial Power of Attorney
Depending on your situation, more complex planning including creating a revocable living trust, special needs trust, or life insurance trust might also be appropriate. Our goal is to help you learn about options that might be a good fit for you and let you decide how simple or complex you would like your plan to be.
Meeting with an attorney helps ensure that you are doing planning appropriate for your specific situation and needs.
A good estate planning attorney does more than simply create documents!
During the estate planning process they should help you:
- Organize important information about your family and finances to make things easier for your agents;
- Understand the federal estate taxes that might be due upon your death;
- Understand the state inheritance taxes that leaving money to certain beneficiaries might trigger (and strategize about how to best limit these taxes);
- Plan around the income tax considerations relevant to traditional retirement accounts;
- Analyze how difficult probate might be in your specific situation;
- Explore tax planning opportunities and approaches for minimizing probate expenses;
- Understand the impact of non-probate assets; and
- Consider how much protection should be provided for assets that pass to your children or other beneficiaries.
Taking the time to prepare for and participate in a detailed consultation can help give you peace of mind, knowing that you have considered and explored issues that could have a significant impact on your plan.
A revocable living trust is not necessary for everyone but might be recommended if you:
- Desire maximum flexibility and privacy when dealing with assets;
- Are looking to reduce complexity for your loved ones in managing your estate;
- Wish to set up ongoing trusts for your spouse, partner, or descendants upon your death;
- Own properties in multiple states;
- Wish to pass significant retirement assets to loved ones in trust;
- Have a complicated or blended family situation;
- Plan to exclude certain family members from inheriting from you or want to treat your children differently;
- Want to make it easier for others to assist you with managing your assets during your lifetime.
It is important to look at your particular situation and to create an estate plan that will appropriately address your specific needs. In some cases this involves a revocable trust, in others it does not. Our goal is to help you evaluate your options so you can decide what would work best for you.
In most cases, you will not need to travel at all. We use virtual consultations and travel TO our clients for their signing meetings, making our services ideal for clients with mobility issues. Based in Mercer County, we currently serve clients from Bergen County to the Greater Philadelphia area, but are able to offer services throughout New Jersey and Pennsylvania through our hybrid model and the use of mobile notary services.