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Who Plans My Funeral?

Posted on April 11, 2023 by

Many clients wonder who is responsible for planning their funeral, selecting burial or cremation, and making other arrangements after their death.  Some clients ask what happens if family members disagree about these matters. In Wisconsin, there is a default law that dictates who has the authority to make these decisions after your death.  The default […]

Authorization for Final Disposition

Posted on April 4, 2023 by

Estate Planning Attorney Shanna Yonke explores Wisconsin’s default law regarding who gets to make decisions regarding the disposition of your body, funeral arrangements, and other matters that arise after your death.  She urges viewers to utilize the authorization for final disposition as it takes precedence over default law and allows you to change your mind […]

Shaken or Stirred? Mixed or Blended?

Posted on December 15, 2022 by

When I meet with new clients I have them fill out what we refer to as our estate planning “questionnaire.”  Basically, a form that asks them to insert personal information on the first two pages and financial information on pages 3-5.  Page one asks about marital status and page two asks the potential client to […]

Nothing to Prove: Making the Case for Self-Proving Affidavits

Posted on November 15, 2022 by

In the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, I wrote a blog post on how to create a valid will in Wisconsin.  At the time, we were all stuck at home by government order, and many clients signed their wills without a notary public.  Signing a will without a notary public was a short-term fix during […]

What is a Self-proving Affidavit?

Posted on November 3, 2022 by

In her latest vlog, Estate Planning Attorney Shanna Yonke shares what a self-proving affidavit is and why having one makes it easier for your loved one after your death.   Video Transcript: My name is Shanna Yonke and I’m an attorney on Ruder Ware’s Estate Planning Team. To make a valid will in Wisconsin you […]

How is That Account Titled?

Posted on September 22, 2022 by

My husband just recently opened a new account at one of those online, do-it-yourself, investment companies.  He promises that with the tiny amount of money I was willing to allow him to experiment with that he will make us tons of money.  After he got the account set up, he asked me to sit beside […]

Importance of Beneficiary Designations

Posted on September 6, 2022 by

Almost any type of asset you might have can have a beneficiary designation associated with it.  Beneficiary designations supersede the designation in a will or trust and your failure to update them can lead to complications when distributing assets.  Estate Planning Attorney Ashley Hawley shares why it’s important to pay attention to beneficiary designations and […]

Will or Trust: Which is Right for Me?

Posted on June 21, 2022 by

One of the most common questions asked by our clients is, “What is the difference between a will and a trust, and which is right for me?”  Last week, I provided a brief summary of the differences between these two common estate planning tools in a vlog.  You can view the vlog here.  In this […]

What is the Difference Between a Will and a Trust?

Posted on June 14, 2022 by

Attorney Shanna Yonke addresses this question in her latest video post. Video Transcript: My name is Shanna Yonke and I’m an attorney on Ruder Ware’s Estate Planning Team. One of the most common questions asked by our clients is what is the difference between a will and a trust and which is right for me? […]

Nominations of Guardians for Minor Children

Posted on April 18, 2022 by

With Mother’s Day around the corner, Attorney Ashley Hawley felt the timing would be a perfect opportunity to discuss nominations of guardians for minor children and a will. Her latest post walks viewers through the nomination process, the importance of successor options, and the importance of the temporary guardianship form found on the State Bar […]