A. Smith Law Office, L.L.C.
your legal needs
living and healthy you value
being able to make your own decisions about your finances, property,
care, and raising your children. Should become incapacitated or die you
others will handle these matters for you according to your wishes.
The only way to
assure that will happen is
through estate planning. This process involves weighing various
financial decisions and creating legal arrangements to carry out those
is essential for all individuals to limit estate taxes and to ensure
wishes are carried out after your death. A key
component to estate
planning is having a Will, which is sometimes called a “Last Will and
Testament”. The Last Will and Testament is used to transfer
hold in your name to the person(s) and/or organization(s) you want to
and specifies the Executor(s) and the nominated Guardians should you
leaving minor children. A Will only
becomes effective upon
your death and after it is admitted to probate.
tools that are
helpful in estate planning include trusts, insurance
policies, joint and
survivor deeds, and transfer on death deeds to reduce estate-tax
also prepare Power of Attorney documents to assist you in handling your
in the event you are unable or unwilling to handle the matters on your
own. The Power of Attorney documents include
Financial Power of
Attorney, Real Estate Power of Attorney, Living Will, and Durable Power
Attorney for Health Care.
our office at 419-502-2002 to schedule an estate planning appointment
that your wishes are carried out, and your family is properly
protected, in the
event of your incapacity or death.
Probating of Estates
individual passing away typically their estate will need to be probated
or not the individual left a Last Will and Testament. A
misconception is that by not having a Will, or by having a Will, an
will avoid their estate from being probated. This is not the
there is property which needs to be transferred to others or there are outstanding
bills to be paid.
the event of
your death, our office will assist your family members in a personal,
professional, and efficient manner in handling the probating of your
Other Probate Matters
handling the probating of estates, our office handles other probate
including Guardianships, Adoption, and Name Changes. Please
office at 419-502-2002 for details.
practice encompasses a wide variety of matters, including termination
marriage whether by divorce or dissolution, child custody matters,
child support and spousal support payments, paternity issues,
property rights. Our office can also prepare
Agreement, also called Antinupital Agreement, for you prior to marriage
ensure that your, and your partner’s, property
on a Family Law matter, keep these simple rules in mind:
- Hire a lawyer you
can trust. Remember, this person should make you feel comfortable and
should look after your interests.
- Gather together
to give to your attorney copies of all your financial records including
tax returns, pay stubs, and investments. Keep these documents together
and make sure you keep copies for your own records.
- Gather together
to give to your attorney copies of any documents relating to ownership
of property and personal belongings including deeds and titles for any
houses, land, cars, boats, or other vehicles.
- Discuss with your
attorney the timeline of what has to happen when and make sure you keep
a running calendar of important dates and documents or appearances that
are required of you.
- Open separate
checking and credit accounts. Separate your paychecks from your
spouse's as soon as possible.
- Work on making
important decisions regarding any children or other dependents as
quickly as possible.
- Communicate as
efficiently as possible and be selective in the matters that are
important to you.
issues occur between parties which necessitate court
Law issues can be emotionally tolling on an individual and frequently
clients are experiencing one of the most difficult times in their
life. Our office has handled hundreds of cases
involving family law
issues in Erie,
your matter will be handled in a professional manner while giving you
of comminciation that you need to understand your legal
rights and the
options available to you.
criminal and traffic offenses are handled differently from adult
traffic offenses. Juvenile
handled through the juvenile judicial system and the juvenile courts
have jurisdiction over matters concerning children,
delinquency, neglect, truancy, and running
juveniles are referred to juvenile courts by law enforcement officers,
others are referred by school officials, social services agencies,
and even parents for behavior or conditions that are determined to
intervention by the formal system for social control.
Once a juvenile
is under juvenile court disposition, the court may retain jurisdiction
the juvenile legally becomes an adult and at times following the
release of the
juvenile they are often ordered to a period of probation
which is similar
to parole supervision for adult offenders. Juvenile offenders who
conditions of aftercare may have their aftercare revoked, resulting in
recommitted to a facility.
estate law does not just cover the preparation of deeds or review of
mortgage documents. Real estate law also includes, but is not
buying and selling residences, foreclosure, commercial property
construction of residential and multi-family developments, mobile homes
purchases or use, condemnation, landlord/tenant issues, mortgage
property line concerns, easements, right-of-way, property use issues,
liens, and zoning issues. Many real estate issues
can be resolved
out of court but occasionally the legal siutation will need to proceed
your real estate needs may be our office will give you the best advice
prepare you for what lies ahead to allow you to make the best decisions
which involves private law suits between two or more private entities,
law involves individuals who are being prosecuted by the state or
government for an act that has been classified as a crime. Crimes are
classified as Misdemeanors--less serious offenses that are normally
by a fine, like
petty theft, obstruction
of justice, or possession of a small amount of marijuana; and
serious offenses that warrant imprisonment of one or more years, such
theft or assault with a deadly weapon.
criminal law, the suit is initiated by the state or federal government
a prosecutor and the prosecutor has to prove to the judge or jury
a reasonable doubt" that the defendant is guilty of the crime charged.
people do not understand that a “no contest” pleas to a criminal charge
result in the Judge finding the individual “guilty” of the
It is important to know your legal rights in criminal matters as
made to police officers or other investigator may be held against you
the statement is taken out of context. Do not take a
approach to a criminal situation, contact our office at 419-502-2002 at
onset of the situation for experienced legal representation.
U-turns to DUI, if you have
been cited for violating a traffic law and would like to learn more
legal options, including your right to go to court to fight
you should contact our office for representation as more serious
reckless driving or leaving the scene of an accident can impact your
privileges. Having an experienced attorney on your side can
that your legal interests are protected to the fullest extent possible.
LIMITED LIABILITY COMPANIES
considering starting a business, or already own your own business,
corporation or LLC can provide you with the personal financial
you need. Plus, incorporating a business promotes a
image and tells potential customers that you are a legitimate business.
provide you with the professional legal advise and the documentation
to appropriately form a corporation or LLC to ensure your protection as
incorporating a business doesn’t automatically mean you won’t have
office will guide you
through the necessary steps in properly forming and maintaining a
LLC, such as not co-mingling your
personal and business funds and mainintaing proper documents.
websites that offer canned forms for completion but they are
anyone who visits the website and does not provide you with the
you need to ensure you are properly and fully protected. Don’t leave
protection of your business and personal assets to boilerplate
do not tend to you needs, contact our office at 419-502-2002 for
legal representation for your protection.
promises that the law will enforce and contracts may be written or
The law provides remedies if a promise is broken or “breached”.
legally binding as a contract, a promise must be exchanged for adequate
consideration. Adequate consideration is a benefit or detriment which a
receives which reasonably and fairly induces them to make the
An oral promise may be considered a
contract, and may be enforced,
if one party has relied to his detriment on the promise ances
governed by statutory law and common
law. Common law is
based upon judge’s decisions. Statutory law may
contracts be put in writing and executed with particular formalities.
Otherwise, the parties may enter into a binding agreement
a formal written document. Contact our office at 419-502-2002
believe you have entered into a contract and have contract law