Estate Planning Hampton Newport News VA | Promise Law

Estate Planning

Estate planning is not just for the super wealthy – it’s for everyone. A well-thought-out estate plan reduces emotional and financial stress for your family. Not taking the responsibility to create your plan means your family will have to pursue an adult guardianship in the event of your incapacity. A small amount of planning today will provide an enormous amount of security tomorrow.

We make the estate planning process simple by asking all the right questions, creating all the necessary documents, and guiding you on re-titling of assets or change of beneficiary designations as needed.

If you’re ready to make sure you’ve planned for the future, let Promise Law help you. Call us now at 757-690-2470 or contact us online. We are located in Hampton, Virginia, serving Hampton, Newport News and the entire Hampton Roads area. We’ll help you make sure that promises made are promises kept.


A properly drafted and funded trust helps your family avoid the court expenses and delay of probate at your passing. Your trust goes into effect the minute you create it, allowing you to plan for lifetime disability.

A trust-based estate plan is advisable if you’ve got one or more of the following circumstances or concerns: a blended family; unmarried partners; same-sex spouses or partners; minor children; special needs beneficiaries; beneficiaries with creditor issues; control of distribution to beneficiaries over time; or protection of assets if the surviving spouse remarries.


A will states who gets the assets in your name at your death. Unlike a trust, a will doesn’t help manage assets during your lifetime at all. Your will is also where you can nominate guardians for minor children.

All wills go through probate, but depending on your specific provisions, a well-drafted will can reduce the delay and expense of probate for your beneficiaries.

Powers Of Attorney

Powers of attorney, sometimes also called durable powers of attorney, give authority to the named agent to manage your assets. These powers are important in a trust-based estate plan because the trustee only has authority over trust assets and not assets in your name. For a will-based estate plan, powers of attorney are essential as they provide the only way to manage assets without involvement of the court in the event of your lifetime incapacity.

Advance Medical Directives

Advance medical directives serve several important functions. They name someone to make medical decisions for you if it’s determined you can no longer do so for yourself. Directives also express your preferences for end-of-life decisions through what is sometimes called a living will. This document avoids confusion and additional stress for your family, friends and healthcare professionals in the event you’re unable to give them direction about your care.

Adult Guardianship

When someone didn’t prepare an estate plan and is incapacitated, a guardian or conservator is needed.

Incapacity can occur in elderly persons with dementia, in the case of special needs children who have reached adulthood, or where any adult has experienced illness or injury that resulted in cognitive impairment. Similar to a guardian, a conservator is court appointed and manages an incapacitated adult’s finances.

If you are seeking adult guardianship or conservatorship of a loved one, whether to make medical decisions or perform financial transactions on their behalf, Promise Law can help. Our process includes evaluating if you’ve got options other than court. If not, then we prepare all the documents for the court and are with you throughout the process from the initial filing to the final hearing.

We know this is a difficult and frustrating time when you want to help but don’t have any authority to do so. Let Promise Law ease the process for you.

If you’re already appointed by the court as conservator, then click here to learn more about estate administration.

Property Deeds

In certain cases, property deeds play an important role in the estate planning process. A property deed is essentially a legal document recorded with the court clerk’s office that conveys ownership of real estate and that can be used to transfer property. This is the way a person’s home is put into a trust. There are also some circumstances in which other types of deeds can be used as well, including quitclaim deeds and Virginia TOD (transfer-on-death) deeds. With guidance from an experienced estate planning lawyer, you can determine the best way to manage your assets and distribute property to your heirs.

Legacy Planning

In many ways, estate planning is about protection and efficiency. A properly constructed estate plan is one that ensures that you or your loved ones will be fully cared for — no matter what unexpected turns life brings. In addition, a well-crafted estate plan should ensure that all of your property and assets are passed on to your selected beneficiaries in the most effective manner. Estate plans should contain clear instructions, so that your heirs can understand and follow your wishes, and so that you do not leave your loved ones in confusion or conflict.

Using a more holistic view, legacy planning can help to add an additional sense of purpose to your estate plan. Legacy planning takes a proactive approach to using your means— both financial and nonfinancial — to leave a positive impact on your loved ones, on the causes that you care about, and on your community. Our Virginia legacy planning attorneys help our clients achieve the goals and objectives that are most important to them.

Legacy Statements

A legacy statement is something that you may wish to leave for your family members and your loved ones. Indeed, a legacy statement can be an important, highly personal part of an overall estate plan. In general, the overriding purpose of such a statement is to provide comfort to your loved ones.

Legacy statements are highly individualized and provide an opportunity to leave a heartfelt message. In it, you can leave life advice, pass on important stories or information, or simply tell your family members that you love them. A legacy statement can also be used to offer an explanation as to why certain decisions were made regarding inheritance and other estate planning issues.

Get Help From Our Virginia Estate Planning Attorneys Today

At Promise Law, our Virginia estate planning lawyers work diligently to ensure that our clients’ needs are met. We will help you and your family achieve peace of mind through careful and personalized estate planning. To set up a fully confidential initial consultation, please contact our law firm today. With an office in Hampton, we serve communities throughout the region, including Hampton, Newport News, Poquoson, Williamsburg, Yorktown and surrounding counties.  Give us a call at 757-279-7460.