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April 2014

CNBC's 5 Biggest Estate Planning Blunders

CNBC's Shelly Schwartz recently wrote this list of 5 common estate planning blunders.  Turn this list of "don'ts" into a checklist for making sure your estate plan is in order.  Choosing the right people to serve as your executor, power of attorney agent and heath care representative is a key part of a comprehensive estate plan.  Reviewing the beneficiary designations for your life insurance, 401(k) and/or IRA is also critically important.  The CNBC list includes an important bonus point--don't delay!  Procrastination is a problem when it comes to estate planning.

  • Mary was not only thorough and professional, but always kind and willing to go the extra mile.

    R. Hocking, New York, New York

  • Mary Schinke provided excellent guidance to me and my co-executor as we navigated the probate process, resolving an estate with many loose ends. It would have been impossible for us executors to navigate the issues without Mary—she patiently explained every legal obligation to us, and carefully led us in resolving debt issues and distributions. In preparing the paperwork for the court, Mary ensured that the most accurate information would be conveyed. Mary carefully prepared for every meeting, and had all the time in the world for us when we met with her. Her cheerful “can do” attitude went a long way in getting us past the knotty issues. We are grateful to have worked with Mary! 

    L. Pistell, Summit, New Jersey & S. Beard, Blandford, Massachusetts

  • Mary is a lawyer's lawyer. Incredible knowledge, completely trustworthy with a particular expertise in trust and estate work. As a partner in a same sex relationship, Mary's time and advice in helping us properly plan for the inevitable was priceless. And did I mention her comforting, humorous and loving manner? Simply the best.

    P. Healy, Roxbury, Connecticut & New York, New York

  • Mary, thank you so much for all you’ve done. Your compassionate warmth and professionalism have been so important to me.

    J. Taylor, Southbury, Connecticut

  • I wasn’t looking forward to making my will, but working with Mary made the process easy and comfortable. She is calm, thoughtful, and easy to understand.  Mary also helped me through the process of serving as an Executor.  She demystified the process and was a delight to work with. Mary will remain my cherished counsel and confidant, not only in law but also in my life.

    M. Richardson, Southbury, Connecticut

  • When my husband died Mary helped me settle his affairs. Working with her, the process was smooth and easy to understand. Mary’s caring manner was a comfort to me during a difficult time.

    J. Omenson, Roxbury, Connecticut

  • I appreciated Mary's exceptional service. Mary was calm and clear throughout the process, making it far less onerous than I had anticipated.

                                                                                                                      - S. Albrecht, Canton, Connecticut

  • Mary is always thoughtful, thorough and a true pleasure to work with.

    C. Haver & S. Skolnick, Roxbury, Connecticut

  • Mary always made us feel very comfortable with the process and her effort.

    D. Hocking, New Rochelle, New York

  • Mary is very easy to work with.  Her deep and broad knowledge and experience helped us get our wills and other important life documents completed.  And we actually had a good time doing it!

    L. Apolzon & J. Stanton, Roxbury, Connecticut & New York, New York

  • Mary Schinke provided expert guidance to me and my sons about estate planning, powers of attorney and healthcare proxies.  She was excellent at consulting each party as to their individual needs and then following up to assure alignment of my estate plan to theirs.

    M. Davis, New York, New York and Washington, Connecticut

  • I have nothing but good things to say about my attorney, Mary Schinke. Not only is she an 
    excellent lawyer who covers all bases in an accurate and comprehensive manner, but is also a
    compassionate and kind person.  I heartily recommend her.

    M. Garfin, Southbury, Connecticut