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Wills and Probate

Established Connecticut Firm Advises on Wills and Probate Matters

Norwalk lawyers assist clients with a full range of estate concerns

Knowledgeable legal guidance can eliminate the confusion and stress often associated with wills and probate matters. At DePanfilis & Vallerie, LLC in Norwalk, we advise individuals, families and businesses on various estate and succession concerns. Whether you’re looking to draft a testamentary document, revise an existing plan or settle the affairs of someone who has recently died, our experienced attorneys offer skilled counsel to help accomplish your objectives. Senior Partner David W. Stergas has an LL.M. degree in taxation and more than 30 years of practice in this field. He and attorney Marc J. Grenier provide individualized assistance throughout the will creation and execution processes.

Retired Probate Judge of 22 years, Anthony DePanfilis, leads our Estate planning department.  His years of experience offers an even better understanding of the entire process.

Experienced attorneys develop effective wills to protect and distribute assets

Regardless of your age or the scope of your assets, our estate planning attorneys offer comprehensive legal support for Connecticut residents seeking to establish a will. You can rely on us to deliver knowledgeable counsel on:

  • Enforceability — Our firm ensures that the wills we prepare are clearly written and in compliance with legal standards regarding testator capacity and witness attestation. Having handled all types of estates, we can tailor the document to your precise specifications whether you’re looking for a simple will, a set of wills for spouses, or a complex document that addresses sophisticated assets.
  • Intestacy — A person who dies without a valid will has their property distributed according to the state’s intestacy laws. Even if someone expressed their preferences regarding the division of their estate, assets are divided based on how survivors are prioritized within the relevant statute. This could mean that a spouse might not collect the full amount of the decedent’s property or that an estranged sibling would have the same inheritance as a brother or sister the person was close to.
  • Revisions — People’s circumstances and goals change over time, and a sound will should reflect the testator’s current intentions. We help individuals and families review wills and other estate documents to see if revisions should be made. From there, we make the necessary changes in a cost-effective manner.

Before you finalize your will, we’ll make sure that you understand potential tax consequences, the importance of appointing a qualified executor, and other key estate planning details.

Fairfield County advocates guide clients through the probate process

Serving as the executor of someone’s estate is a serious responsibility, and our seasoned lawyers can help you carry out important tasks effectively. If the assets involved do not exceed $40,000, we will outline the small estate process by which you can submit an affidavit to the court in order to expedite the probate process. In standard cases before the Probate Court, we’ll explain what items can be transferred outside of probate, such as jointly held property, life insurance proceeds, and assets that have been placed in a living trust. From there, we’ll take you through each step of the probate process, including filing the will, making an inventory of the decedent’s assets and bringing them into the estate, contacting heirs, paying estate expenses and distributing the property in accordance with the will.

We are accomplished probate litigators who can handle any disputes that arise relating to the administration of the estate. These can include claims involving alleged fraud, undue influence, lack of capacity, or coercion. In negotiations, contested matters before the Probate Court and ex parte proceedings, our attorneys strive to enforce the testator’s intentions while minimizing the expense and aggravation associated with these matters.

Thorough estate planners create living wills to control medical decisions

Along with controlling how your assets should be allocated, you also have the right to control your medical treatment decisions, even if you are incapacitated due to injury or illness. However, without clear guidance, your doctors and loved ones might not know how to proceed. We draft living wills and documents appointing healthcare representatives so that you can express your wishes regarding certain treatments and place decisions into the hands of someone you trust.

Contact an experienced Connecticut lawyer for advice on wills and probate matters

DePanfilis & Vallerie, LLC assists clients with various estate matters including the preparation of wills and the execution of probate responsibilities. To discuss your specific situation and goals at our Norwalk office, please call 203-846-9585 or contact us online.

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Office Location
  • Norwalk Office
    25 Belden Avenue
    Norwalk, Connecticut 06850
    Phone: 203-846-9585
    Fax: 203-847-2849