103 Rowell Court, Falls Church, VA 22046   
(703) 538-3600

Estate Planning

Estate planning – according to your wishes

Whatever the size of your estate, we can help design the will, trust, or combination of these that best fits your needs and draft customized documents that ensure your assets are distributed according to your wishes. We begin by simply talking with you, getting to know you to ensure we understand your circumstances, before using the appropriate approach to create the right estate plan for you.

We can assist you in the following areas of estate planning:

  • Creating a will and/or trust
  • Trust administration
  • Revocable trusts
  • Irrevocable trusts
  • Agreements
  • Tax-efficient wealth transfer
  • Pet trusts
  • Powers of attorney for finances and for health care

Division of property by the court

Without a valid will, the court can divide your property as the state legislature sees fit—not necessarily in the manner you would choose.

Our attorneys have in-depth knowledge of the applicable estate and tax laws and how they may impact your plans for your assets. We discuss all available options with you and advise you on the best way to divide your estate.

Tax-efficient wealth transfer

When it comes to allocating funds to your beneficiaries, you want to do so in a manner that ensures your money reaches its intended recipients without being subject to unnecessary taxes. We can determine and execute the best strategy for tax-efficient wealth transfer to make your money go the distance.

Pet trusts

Over time, your pet becomes part of your family. So it is only natural that you would like to make arrangements for your companion animal’s care in the event he or she outlives you. Pet trusts are an excellent way to do this. We can create a pet trust that ensures the care and protection of your pet(s). The trust remains in effect until the death of your pet or, if more than one pet is named in the trust, the death of the final surviving pet.

According to your wishes

We take pride in our ability to design solutions that match your specific needs, and in drafting customized, legally sound documents that ensure the legacy you worked so hard to build is distributed according to your wishes.

Your family is unique; your estate plan should match

When your needs call for something unique, we are prepared. We have a thorough understanding of the estate laws in Virginia, Maryland, and Washington, D.C., and we provide assistance to employees of international organizations (especially G-4 visa holders) and legal counsel on matters involving:

  • Non-resident vs. resident estate tax issues
  • Qualified domestic trusts
  • And much more

Not everyone follows the same path to becoming a family, but the end result is the same—a group of individuals who care for and depend on each other. Whether you are part of a blended family or a same-sex couple, you deserve the comfort and peace of mind that comes with knowing your loved ones will be well cared for after your death. We have extensive experience helping people determine the best way to plan estates and transfer wealth regardless of family structure.

Why can’t I simply download the documents from the Internet?

When the time comes to plan for your future and determine how your estate will be handled, it can be tempting to simply download standard documents from the Internet.

However, the best way to ensure your assets are distributed according to your wishes—including to your spouse, children, or others who depend on you, or if you have charitable intent—is with the assistance of an experienced estate planning attorney.

At Law Offices of John L. Laster, we spend each day helping individuals and families through estate planning and trust administration. You have worked hard to get where you are – don’t trust a standard form to accommodate your needs and represent your legacy for the care of your family for generations to come.