The law office of Isabel Betancourt-Levey serves a diverse and multi-cultural South Florida client base and is committed to providing personal attention, compassionate legal representation, and protection of legal rights, primarily in the area of Estate Planning (Wills and Trusts) including drafting of deeds and entity formation, as well as in certain family law cases relating to Divorce, Paternity, Intra-Family Adoptions, and Prenuptial and Post nuptial Agreements.
In the area of Estate Planning Law, we counsel and assist our clients in preparing for foreseen and unforeseen life circumstances such as death and/or disability, ensuring our clients have the necessary legal documents to ensure their assets are distributed according to their wishes, as well as advising clients on how to avoid or minimize costly and time-consuming judicial proceedings that are oftentimes avoidable with the proper documentation.
We ensure that our clients’ choices regarding fiduciary appointments and their instructions for the distribution of their real and personal property upon death are clearly reflected in their estate planning documents, in the most advantageous way provided by law. For married couples, this may include credit shelter provisions depending on each clients’ needs.
Our estate plans will usually include a Last Will and Testament, Revocable Living Trust, Assignment of Personalty, Separate Writing document, Advance Health Care Directives, a Financial Power of Attorney, and when required a Deed for real estate to assist with probate-avoidance. We will also provide methods to eliminate or reduce the need for the probate process whenever possible including the proper funding of a client’s trust, and will analyze options to secure greater asset protection including through certain business entity formations such as an LLC.
If a person dies without an estate plan designed to avoid a judicial administration, or with a will or estate plan but without the proper ownership or legal designations on the titles to their assets, or without the proper funding of assets required to avoid this court-administered process, then the probate process will be required; in such cases we will represent you in the most diligent and efficient manner possible, offering reasonable and competitive rates for our services.
In Family Law matters, our services are limited to cases where a mutually satisfactory resolution of issues is possible. We believe that whenever possible, the best results are often achieved as well as maintained, in cases where the parties negotiate their own terms as opposed to court-imposed decisions. As we assist in the negotiation and/or drafting of settlement agreements, we ensure that our clients’ interests are protected. In agreed divorces, we’ll assist clients in negotiating and/or drafting or reviewing marital settlement agreements and/or parenting plans that include provisions for time-sharing and child support. In paternity actions, we’ll draft or review proposed parenting plans on our clients’ behalf to ensure parental rights are protected and responsibilities are clear vis-à-vis the minor children.
When representing clients in Intra-Family or Stepparent Adoptions, we seek the establishment of our clients’ rights vis-à-vis the adoptee family member, and will address any necessary termination of a biological parent’s rights including agreements for consent.
For clients who are interested in protecting certain assets from a spouse or spouse-to-be in the event of an unexpected death or divorce, we will draft or review a Post nuptial or Prenuptial Agreement as well as Homestead Waivers when appropriate.