Full Service Law Firm Located in Idaho & Utah

Estate Planning

Our estate attorneys have extensive experience drafting and handling wills, trusts, estate plans, probate documents, and more.

  • Last Will & Testament
  • Living Wills
  • Formal & Informal Probate
  • Small Estate Affidavits
  • Trusts
  • Power Of Attorney


A will is a formal legal document, stating your wishes upon your death. 

Our estate planning attorneys at our law firm work with you to determine what your wishes are for your estate upon your death.

We draft wills regularly not just for clients in advanced stages of life, but also young couples who have just had their first child, young individuals who amass great wealth, and more.

A will generally includes:

  • How your property and debts will be distributed upon your death,
  • Who you wish to act as the personal representative for your estate,
  • The terms on which you want your belongings to be handled.

Contact our estate planning law office for a consultation today.


A Trust is a legal entity that you create to hold your assets during your life, or upon your death. 

A Trust allows you to have great control over how your property is distributed, such as not allowing one of the people you designate to receive assets until they reach a certain age, or meet a certain condition.

Trusts are complicated, and require a thorough review and careful planning from an estate planning attorney.

We have set up Trusts for dozens of clients, and can help you navigate and set up yours. We have experience setting up the following kinds of Trusts:

  • Revocable Trusts
  • Irrevocable Trusts
  • Family Trusts
  • Living Trusts
  • Charity Remainder Trusts
  • Testamentary Trusts
  • And more.

Contact our estate planning office for a consultation today.


Who are the main players in probate?

Who is involved in the probate process can be narrowed down to those who fall within 4 basic categories:

  • The Executor— This is the person tasked with facilitating and distributing financial assets in accordance with the deceased person’s final will. If someone dies in without a will, then the state chooses someone it believes to be the most appropriate executor (a spouse, sibling, etc.). However, if you’ve hired an estate planning attorney for estate, will, and trust planning, then this attorney is and ought to be the executor—he or she will represent deceased person, handle asset distribution, and control access to the trust in accordance with the deceased person’s wishes as outlined in their final will.
  • The Beneficiaries—Those who inherit the deceased person’s assets—usually relatives and close friends, but sometimes organizations, charities, and other parties. Beneficiary designations direct assets to the right people.
  • The Creditors—Those who collect debts owed by the estate.
  • The Judge—He or she presides over the probate process.

Contact our estate planning law office for a consultation with a probate attorney.

What does probate involve?

Once deceased, a person’s documents (including the death certificate and final will and testament) are gathered up by the executor (ideally, the attorney) and presented to the probate court.

During this process, probate lawyers will:

  • Gather assets—This involves gathering and valuing said assets, which can include retirement accounts and assets, investment accounts, personal property of any kind, etc. 
  • Alert creditors—If there is anything owed from the estate, then the creditors need to be notified so that they can collect. Creditors can be contractors, mortgage holders, credit card companies, etc. The funeral home director also needs compensation.
  • Distribute the remaining estate—Once all debts are paid and the remaining assets have been properly valued, the executor begins distributing the remaining estate to the deceased person’s heirs as outlined in their final will and testament.

There is also the final step of filing the deceased person’s final taxes which, while not part of the official court proceedings, can be done by your estate planning attorney.  This must usually occur within 9 months of the date of the person’s death.

Contact our estate planning office for a consultation today.

What is the cost of probate?

Probate court costs vary depending on the size of the estate. The state in which probate occurs may also be a factor—costs in are likely different than those in another state. That said, probate costs are generally between 3 and 7 percent of the estate’s overall value.

Probate costs are typically covered by the estate, so it’s important to have the estate planning lawyers who can reduce or avoid as many costs as possible so that more can be passed down to the heirs of the estate.

Contact our estate planning law office for a consultation today.

In a nutshell, “probate” is the legal process that occurs following a person’s death. 

While the specific details vary by state, in general, the purpose of probate is typically to validate and authenticate the deceased person’s final will—distribution of assets and personal finance, paying or assigning debts, etc.—all of which you can expect from our estate planning attorneys.

This is a court-supervised process in which having an estate planning attorney in is a major factor in ensuring the dictates of the final will are carried out.

“Estate planning is an important and everlasting gift you can give your family.”

Suze Orman

important things you should know

Frequently Asked Questions About Estate Law

Idaho residents are free of this stress as Idaho does not impose inheritance or estate taxes.

However, inheritance from a different state that does levy these taxes will still apply.

There are also non-estate taxes that may need to be paid on behalf of the deceased. Large estates are also typically subject to federal estate tax, affecting Idaho and anywhere else in the US.

In short—while estate taxes are not levied in ID, there may be taxes due on certain estates based on other factors.

Estate planning lawyers can help you sort these issues out and eliminate as many taxes as possible on an estate inheritance.

Contact our estate planning law office for a consultation today. 

If taxes are owed, the only one responsible for filing would be the executor—the person appointed as the administrator—of the estate.

These taxes would include:

  • The final individual federal and state income tax returns—Due on Tax Day the year of their passing.
  • The federal estate tax return—If the deceased’s estate exceeds a gross asset and prior taxable gift value of $11.58 million, this is due 9 months following the person’s death.

Contact our estate planning law office for a consultation today.

The good news is that the government doesn’t automatically take a person’s estate if they die without a will. The bad news is that government oversight and dispersal of the estate can be more burdensome. 

Estate law in Idaho has a statute in place that provides a kind of “default will” in these cases—but obviously, the way in which the estate is transferred in this case may not be in everyone’s best interest.

Typically, the court appoints an adult relative—usually the surviving spouse—as the estate’s executor. This person is responsible for protecting and distributing the estate after the government has claimed what they can. 

Our estate planning lawyers can help you establish a will that ensures your estate is passed on to the persons and/or institutions that you see fit.

Contact our estate planning law office for a consultation today.

It is a good idea to have both. 

The reason for this is that while trusts are legal entities that can hold your assets upon your death or disability, a will can mitigate a lot of problems as well. 

For example, maybe you have assets that have yet to be transferred to your trust upon your death.

Giving power of attorney to one of our estate planning lawyers gives them the power to safeguard your trust and distribute your will according to your directions.

Contact our estate planning law office for a consultation today.

You are not required to reveal anything about your will to anyone involved in your estate. 

That said, our estate planning lawyers don’t typically recommend this for a number of reasons. 

For example, no one is legally obligated to do what you ask of them in your will. Many circumstances can cause them to refuse your requests, which can offset the plan laid out in your will. 

Going over your will with certain individuals involved in it is often a good idea—you can gauge their reaction, reorganize things, and in general make it more possible for them to accommodate your wishes. This also gives them time and foresight so they can make plans and preparations when the time comes.

Contact our estate planning office for a consultation today.

What You Need to Know About Estate Planning

To fully understand what is involved in estate planning means knowing what constitutes an “estate”. Your personal estate, while it may sound lofty, is simply the sum total of all of your assets. This includes money, property, and investments.

Consider your:

  • Home
  • Vehicle
  • Savings & checking accounts
  • Any personal possessions – furniture, art, electronics, etc.
  • Life insurance
  • Investments of any kind

Estate planning is the process of setting out a detailed list of instructions—outlined in your will—as to what will happen to your estate after you die.

You may have heard of a will referred to as a “living will”. Something to keep in mind is that estate planning is a long-term project. It may be a project lasting 10 years, 30 years, or even longer. As outlined above, almost everyone has an estate of some kind, and over time one’s assets and investments change—your will should change accordingly.

Estate planning attorneys—especially those like us who specialize in estate planning and related practice areas—can help you make the necessary adjustments.

What's Involved in Estate Planning?


Estate planning is something that should be done throughout your life—as ongoing familial, legal, and financial affairs evolve over time, so should your personal estate plan.

Our estate planning attorneys can help you ensure that you are not only in compliance with the law as far as estate planning goes, but that you’re using it to the fullest advantage of yourself and your heirs to whom your estate will be passed down.

The heirs to your estate can be, of course, your loved ones, as well as organizations and charities that you support.


For estate planning to be successful, it’s best to work with an attorney who can help you construct your plan in a way that’s in the best interest of you and your loved ones. 

For example, a family member with disabilities may require a specific type of care, minor children may need a guardian, certain family members may need a certain amount of money.

An attorney can help you with your estate planning so that your heirs can receive what they need from your estate in the right amount, at the right time, and with as little interference from the state as possible.

Careful Consideration

It’s only natural to want your loved ones to get everything they need, but assets from your estate are limited and this can become impossible. Sound estate planning means being as objective and rational as possible with who gets what, and for that it can require the guidance of an estate planning attorney who can help you make these decisions.

You want to ensure that specific assets are going to the individuals who need and will benefit from them the most. This requires great care when it comes to the construction of your will—your assets should be distributed in accordance with individual competence, merit, needs, and so on.

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Have Other Questions?

Our Estate Planning Attorneys Offer Services To Clients 83405 & Nearby Cities

We’ve been practicing estate law services and other practice areas—including personal injury and trademark—for a long time.

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