Local attorney shares must make estate-planning moves


TedAshtonDec. 2, 2021; Phoenix, AZ—No one wants to think about estate planning, especially during the holidays, but as one year ends and a new year begins, it is an ideal time to review or create an estate plan that will save your family members money, time and headaches in the future.

“It’s a misconception that only people of certain means need an estate plan,” said attorney Ted Ashton of Arete Financial Services. “Everyone needs a strategy for receiving assistance if they become disabled, dispersing assets upon their death and establishing guardianship of any minor or disabled children. Having a plan in place provides significant peace of mind and can help reduce the likelihood of family strife, taxes and potential costly litigation.”


When a person passes without a proper estate plan their estate will likely need to be probated. Probate is a legal process where the court establishes a person to serve as the personal representative of the deceased person’s estate and gives that person authority to administer the estate.  Where a valid will is in place, the personal representative will follow the directions provided by the deceased person in the will.  Where a person dies “intestate,” meaning without a will, the laws of the State will govern who will receive the property of the estate. The probate process is very time consuming, often stretching for well over a year. The cost associated with a court probate can be significant, with court costs and attorneys’ fees of $4,000 or more for a simple estate.


While everyone should do a review of their current estate plans, certain life events will trigger a need to revise plans including marriage, birth of a child, death of a spouse, home purchase, retirement or disability, among others.


Ashton is an engaging interviewee available to share the importance of year-end estate planning with your audience to ensure that:


  • Your assets are distributed as you wish
  • Conservators and guardians for any minor or disabled children are named
  • Instructions are given for successors on how to manage assets for named beneficiaries
  • Probate is avoided
  • Tax liability is minimized
  • Costly litigation is avoided
  • Family discord is reduced


To schedule an interview, please contact Tess at tess@phxpr.com.


Arete Financial Services

Arete Financial Services is a boutique firm centered on providing individuals and businesses complete financial wellness. The Arete professionals offer a wealth of financial services including tax, accounting, financial planning and legal all in one convenient location. Arete Financial Services office is located in the west valley.