New Jersey Estate Planning and Real Estate Law Firm

At Merlino & Gonzalez, our skilled estate planning and real estate attorneys are well-prepared to help New Jersey clients navigate the complexities of asset management and wealth transition. For years, we have successfully guided New Jerseyans to maximize and protect their assets for present use and future needs, and shown them how best to pass their assets on to those they love.

No matter what life stage you are at — buying a first home, putting a child through college, anticipating retirement, or making sure there will be a smooth transition of your assets to your heirs when you pass away — our lawyers can help. Whether you require assistance with will-based or trust-based estate planning, estate administration, or real estate matters, you can count on our knowledge and experience to see you through.

What Sets Merlino & Gonzalez Apart From Other Law Firms in New Jersey?

Our reputation for integrity and excellent client service is well-earned. We are committed to providing you with:

  • Knowledgeable legal counsel
  • Careful attention to your unique circumstances
  • Documents customized to your specific needs and wishes
  • Flexibility to accommodate your schedule
  • Clear translations of legalese so you are always in the loop 
  • Informed, empathic response to your personal concerns

Once you become our client, you will be treated with the care and respect you deserve.

Wills-Based Estate Planning in New Jersey

The elements of will-based estate planning are not as simple as they may appear. Having our astute attorneys at your side will provide you with the support you need to feel confident about your decisions, your documents, and the comprehensive nature of the plan you put into place.

Having a will serves several purposes. It names your beneficiaries and an executor to see to it that your final wishes are carried out. Importantly, it also names a guardian for your minor children if they are left without either parent at the time of your death. In your will, you can also state your wishes regarding your funeral, burial/cremation, and memorial service.

Without a will, you will have no say in how your assets are distributed after you die. Instead, the duty of distributing your assets will revert to the state of New Jersey and your worldly goods will be distributed according to state laws of intestate succession, following your bloodline only.

Trusts Can Be Vital in Preparing an Estate Plan

Part of estate planning involves protecting your assets from external risks. Our New Jersey attorneys will assist you not only by drafting and executing your will, but also by creating trusts when appropriate. Contrary to public misconceptions, the use of trusts is not limited to to those with high-net-worth estates. Trusts can serve multiple purposes for those with moderate assets as well. Our attorneys will show you how practical specific trusts can be when it comes to:

  • Avoiding the delay and high cost of probate if your estate is large or complicated
  • Protecting your estate from excessive taxation, creditors, lawsuits, and ex-spouses
  • Providing supplemental funds for special needs children or adults while maintaining their eligibility for government benefits
  • Preventing spendthrift beneficiaries from squandering their inheritance
  • Establishing a charitable legacy
  • Planning for potential incapacity 
  • Planning for a fulfilling retirement
  • Planning for business succession

Although making decisions regarding your own incapacity or mortality can be daunting, you will find that working with our highly competent attorneys makes the process a calm and reassuring one. 

Estate Administration and Trust Settlement

Estate administration and trust settlement are essential since they involve carrying out your carefully crafted plans. At Merlino & Gonzalez, we have created a detailed estate and trust settlement guide for executors. Its step-by-step explanation of how to settle an estate efficiently and without stress includes:

  • Notifying all heirs and beneficiaries of the death
  • Opening a bank account for the estate
  • Taking a full inventory of the deceased’s assets
  • Managing and protecting estate assets by making low-risk investments
  • Paying any taxes and/or debts the estate owes
  • Distributing remaining property to beneficiaries according to the terms of the will

The role of an executor is a fiduciary one, so it is essential for your actions to be above reproach. We will make certain that you carry out your responsibilities correctly and in a way that preserves assets and helps to preserve harmony among members of the deceased’s family 

Handling New Jersey Real Estate Matters

Our real estate attorneys are adept at handling all aspects of New Jersey residential and commercial real estate. Because we are active in this field, we are well-connected to reliable realtors, lenders, and title agencies. Whether you are a buyer, seller or developer, we can give you constructive advice concerning:

  • Transactions (e.g. selling, purchasing, and leasing houses, condos, co-ops, and commercial space)
  • Financing mortgages through banks, other lending institutions, private financing
  • Title insurance and searches
  • Real estate development
  • Land use and zoning issues

If you have a question about any real estate issue or require legal representation in any real estate transaction, contact our real estate attorneys now. We will bring our legal proficiency to bear when it counts most.

Contact Our Experienced New Jersey Estate Planning/Real Estate Attorneys Today

The attorneys of Merlino & Gonzalez have mastery of these areas of the law and will lead you to a successful outcome. Contact us now to ensure that your plans are focused on meeting your expressed goals and that your wishes will be carried out. You can depend on us to take you and your loved ones where you want to go.