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  • Writer's pictureNorthland Elder Law

COMPREHENSIVE ESTATE PLANNING: YOUR GUIDE TO PEACE OF MIND

comprehensive estate planning attorney kansas city mo

Estate planning is not just about securing your assets for the future; it's about ensuring your wishes are honored and your loved ones are taken care of. At Northland Elder Law, our Kansas City Elder Law Attorneys understand the unique needs of our community, and we're here to guide you through the complexities of estate planning with compassion and expertise.


Why Estate Planning Matters

Estate planning is not just for the wealthy or elderly—it's for anyone who wants to protect their assets, designate beneficiaries, and make important decisions about their future healthcare and finances. Without a proper plan in place, your estate could be subject to lengthy and costly probate proceedings, leaving your loved ones with unnecessary stress and financial burden.

Key Components of Estate Planning


Health Care Power of Attorney

This legal document allows you to appoint a trusted individual to make medical decisions on your behalf if you become incapacitated. With a Health Care Power of Attorney, you can ensure that your wishes regarding medical treatment and end-of-life care are respected. The execution of this document eliminates the necessity of a guardianship, which is required when one becomes incapacitated and does not have a Health Care Power of Attorney in place.


Financial Power of Attorney

Similar to the Health Care Power of Attorney, a Financial Power of Attorney enables you to designate someone to manage your financial affairs in the event of your incapacity, or upon execution of the document, depending on your preference. This ensures that your bills are paid, investments are managed, and assets are protected according to your wishes. The execution of this document eliminates the necessity of a conservatorship, which is required when one becomes incapacitated and does not have a general durable power of attorney in place.


Wills

A Last Will and Testament is a foundational component of any estate plan. It allows you to specify how you want your assets to be distributed after your death and appoint a guardian for any minor children. Without a will, state law will dictate the distribution of your assets, which may not align with your wishes.


Revocable Trusts

Also known as living trusts, revocable trusts offer flexibility and privacy in estate planning. By placing your assets into a trust during your lifetime, or by utilizing a trust as beneficiary of your assets, you can avoid probate and ensure a smooth transition of assets to your beneficiaries upon your death.


Irrevocable Trusts

Unlike revocable trusts, irrevocable trusts cannot be modified or revoked once established. These trusts offer unique benefits, such as asset protection in the event that you need long-term care and other tax advantages, but require careful consideration and planning.


Estate planning is a vital process that requires careful consideration and professional guidance. At Northland Elder Law, we're committed to helping individuals and families of all ages in the Kansas City metropolitan area protect their assets, preserve their legacies, and achieve peace of mind through comprehensive estate planning strategies.


Contact us today to schedule a consultation with Cassie Rocha or Kara Burgess and discover how we can help you plan for the future with confidence.



Meet Cassie Rocha, Esq.

Cassie Rocha Elder Law Attorney Kansas City

Cassie Rocha brings a wealth of legal experience to the team at Northland Elder Law. From 2015 to 2021, Mrs. Rocha served as an Assistant Prosecuting Attorney at the Clay County Prosecutor’s Office, where she passionately pursued justice and advocated for victims on behalf of the State of Missouri. Throughout her career, Mrs. Rocha litigated 27 criminal and civil trials, demonstrating her dedication to the law and her commitment to her clients. She also successfully argued a case before the Missouri Court of Appeals, Western District, further showcasing her legal acumen and advocacy skills. Mrs. Rocha is a member of the Missouri Bar Elder Law Committee, the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, and the Missouri Chapter of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys.


Since joining Northland Elder Law in 2021, Mrs. Rocha has applied her extensive litigation experience and deep understanding of Missouri law to help clients navigate the nuances and complexities of estate planning. In January of 2024, Mrs. Rocha became the owner of Northland Elder Law when her mother and the previous owner, Kara Burgess, entered partial retirement. Whether you're creating a will, establishing a trust, or planning for long-term care, Mrs. Rocha is dedicated to providing personalized legal solutions tailored to your unique needs.

Meet Kara Burgess, Esq.

Kara Burgess Kansas City Elder Law Attorney

Kara Burgess graduated from Northwest Missouri State University with a degree in psychology in 1980. In 1983 she received her Master’s Degree in psychology from the University of Missouri-Kansas City. In 1987 she graduated from the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law. Her practice emphasizes protecting and preserving assets for the elderly and Estate planning, including wills, trusts, and power of attorney documents for any age group.

Ms. Burgess is a member of the Missouri Bar Elder Law Committee, the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, (NAELA), and the Missouri Chapter of NAELA (MONAELA). She served as Communications Chair, Secretary, Treasurer and President of MONAELA. IN addition, Ms. Burgess served as the Communications Chair for the Missouri Bar Elder Law Committee. She previously served 7 years on the board of Triality, an organization focusing on programs for individuals with special needs.

After 37 years of practicing law, Ms. Burgess has gone to part time work at Northland Elder Law continuing to work alongside her daughter, Cassie Rocha, who is continuing the important work of helping families with estate planning and asset protection.

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