Creating an estate plan that family members understand

Some people in Pennsylvania who have a will might want to think about whether additional documentation could be useful in their estate plan. Wills and other estate planning documents can cause conflict between family members, but often this is because they do not understand the rationale behind the plan. However, there are ways to convey this rationale to loved ones.

The first step is to make a list of all assets, their value and their beneficiaries. No asset is too small or insignificant: In one case, a brother and sister spent over $750,000 in legal fees arguing over a father’s surfboard. Next, a person should write a letter of intent. This explains the reasons behind the decisions made in the estate plan and may head off any claims by family members that the person’s intentions are not reflected in the plan.

Choosing the right people to administer various elements of the estate plan is also important. For example, people often choose a spouse as executor, but this role may be too taxing for some in an emotionally draining time. If there is a trustee, a professional may be a better choice than a family member because of the level of expertise required. A guardian is the person who will care for any minor children. Finally, a person should review the estate plan regularly as family and assets change.

People may want to talk to an attorney about choosing people for other elements of the estate plan. Someone who is appointed to make medical decisions in case a person becomes incapacitated needs to be calm and compassionate under stress. A caregiving or healthcare background may help. On the other hand, the person chosen for financial power of attorney may need to be someone who is detail-oriented and responsible and able to manage potential conflicts between family members.


The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls, letters and electronic mail. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established.

Privacy Policy

This privacy policy discloses the privacy practices for www.bononiandbononi.com. This privacy policy applies solely to information collected by this web site. It will notify you of the following:

  1. What personally identifiable information is collected from you through the web site, how it is used and with whom it may be shared.
  2. What choices are available to you regarding the use of your data.
  3. The security procedures in place to protect the misuse of your information.
  4. How you can correct any inaccuracies in the information.

Information Collection, Use, and Sharing 
We are the sole owners of the information collected on this site. We only have access to/collect information that you voluntarily give us via email or other direct contact from you. We will not sell or rent this information to anyone.

We will use your information to respond to you, regarding the reason you contacted us. We will not share your information with any third party outside of our organization, other than as necessary.

Unless you ask us not to, we may contact you via email in the future to tell you about specials, new products or services, or changes to this privacy policy.

Your Access to and Control Over Information 
You may opt out of any future contacts from us at any time. You can do the following at any time by contacting us via the email address or phone number given on our website:

  • See what data we have about you, if any.
  • Change/correct any data we have about you.
  • Have us delete any data we have about you.
  • Express any concern you have about our use of your data.

We take precautions to protect your information. When you submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected both online and offline.

We also protect your information offline. Only employees who need the information to perform a specific job (for example, billing or customer service) are granted access to personally identifiable information. The computers/servers in which we store personally identifiable information are kept in a secure environment.


Our Privacy Policy may change from time to time and all updates will be posted on this page.

If you feel that we are not abiding by this privacy policy, you should contact us immediately via telephone at 412-832-2499