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What We Do

Estate Planning

Image by Wynand van Poortvliet

“Plan for what is difficult while it is easy, do what is great while it is small.” – Sun Tzu


It is never too early to plan for the safe-keeping and distribution of your property.  Creating an Estate Plan for your possessions, assets, and personal needs provides for your children’s futures, minimizes legal and tax consequences for those you leave behind, and guarantees that your wishes are honored even when you are unable to enforce them. 


There are many tools that we at SKV Legal can employ to ensure that you and yours are cared for during your life and after your death.  Trusts and wills are two such tools.  While a will goes into effect upon your death and a trust takes effect upon creation, both allow you to control how your property will be divided once you are gone. 


Further, there are five types of trusts: (i) Living; (ii) Testamentary; (iii) Revocable; (iv) Irrevocable; and (v) Funded or Unfunded. Beyond that there are multiple kinds of trust funds.  Whether you need a simple will or a complex trust, we are qualified to help you create a plan that best suits your particular needs.

Every life is touched by death or disability.  An expertly crafted plan ensures a smooth transition in day-to-day life during times of bereavement and infirmity. 



A family can offer its members a support system where protection and care are both given and received.  However, in certain circumstances, it can be unclear how to best protect and provide for a loved one whose needs are atypical.  In those cases, the best choice might be to appoint a legal guardian. 


A guardianship is a relationship between two people: a guardian and a protected person.  When creating a guardianship, you must first identify whether your family member qualifies as a protected person.  There are three types of protected people: minor children whose parents are not their guardians, minor children with disabilities who are about to become adults, and adults with diminished capacity.  Second, you must select a guardian to become vested with the legal power and duty necessary to officially care for a protected person and their property.  And, third, you must outline the specific areas that the guardian will govern for the protected person.


As attorneys, it is our job to help you identify whether or not your loved one needs a guardian, to select who that guardian should be, and to parse out details of the care that should be encompassed in the guardianship.   Regardless of the type of guardianship and the level of authority required in a guardian, we will see your case through from beginning to end. 



Probate can sometimes feel like a dirty word.  Mourning a loved one is hard enough without opening a legal case in order to distribute a loved one’s property.  However, we are equipped and able to make navigating the probate process as easy as possible.


Probate is a legal process by which a deceased person’s assets are distributed to his or her heirs.   In Utah, there are two types: formal or informal, the main difference being court involvement.  In informal probate cases, where the interested parties have come to an agreement for the distribution of property, no court hearing is required.  In formal cases, where the interested parties have not come to an agreement, a hearing is required so the Court can appoint a personal representative.  Regardless of the type of case, good legal representation is key to a successful outcome and in maneuvering the probate process.  We can help you understand Utah’s probate procedure and represent you in any dispute that may arise over the estate. 


Dealing with the grief and pain that accompany death is hard enough without further stress from legal proceedings.  Let us shoulder the added burden of a probate case for you.



The U.S. immigration process can be confusing and time-consuming.  But, it can also help families reunite, individuals become U.S. Citizens, and dreams come true, which is incredibly rewarding. Under current immigration law, processes can be divided into two main groups: non-immigrant and immigrant visas, and we have experience with both.


Immigrant visas provide the visa holder a pathway to legal permanent residency (green card) and citizenship. This type of visa can be family-based or employment-based. Family-based immigration occurs when a U.S. Citizen, legal permanent resident (or green card holder) or refugee helps a family member come to the United States on a family-based visa. Employment-based visas are obtained with the help of an employer who also serves as a sponsor for the applicant.


Non-immigrant visas do not lead to legal permanent residence or naturalization. However, they can provide the visa holder and family the opportunity to live, study and work in the U.S. for a period of time. Non-immigrant visas may also allow the visa holder enough time in the U.S. to request a change of visa status to an immigrant visa. 


Dealing with immigration issues does not have to be overwhelming.  Whether you wish to reunite with family members currently abroad, work and live in the U.S., or apply for your green card or citizenship, our highly experienced attorneys can help you choose the best option available to your specific needs.

International Adoption


Adopting a child can bless the lives of everyone involved. Whether you are interested in adopting a child you have yet to meet, or would like to adopt a relative residing in a different country, we can help you expand your home and family.

International adoptions can be accomplished through three different processes. 


The Hague Convention process applies when the country where the parents reside and the country where the child resides are both qualifying countries.  The adoptive parents must contact a certified agency for a home inspection, and then file Form I-800A and Form I-800 with USCIS.


The Non-Convention Process, requires the adoptive child to be considered an orphan under U.S. Immigration law.  In that case, the adoptive parents must file Form I-600A and Form I-600 with USCIS before the child's sixteenth birthday.

The Immediate Relative/Family-based Petition Process can be used for children under the age of sixteen if the child has been in the physical custody of, and resided with the adoptive parents for at least two years before filing Form I-130.  While only U.S. citizens can use the Hague Convention and Non-Convention processes, legal permanent residents can use the Family-based Petition Process for international adoptions.  

Regardless of the avenue of adoption, let us help you get them here.

Civil Rights


Discrimination is what being treated differently and unfairly because of your race, color, nationality, religion, gender, sexual orientation, disability is called. 

Most of us take it for granted that we’ll go through our day, in our apartments, at work, on the bus, in the grocery store, or driving the freeways, without encountering discrimination and will never know the fear, pain and humiliation that results from it.  However, if you have experienced it, you need an advocate.

SKV specializes in housing and employment based discrimination cases. If you feel you have been treated differently at your job or by your landlord because of your race, color, nationality, religion, gender, sexual orientation, or disability, please give us a call.  

Even though discrimination is severely underreported and often swept under the rug by society in general, there are government agencies, advocacy groups, and private attorneys and law firms who are willing and able to stand up for people who have experienced discrimination and who have been harmed in very real ways by that experience.  We are proud to be one of them and want to hear from you if you feel you need help.


The information contained in this website is provided by Stewart, Kinikini & Vieira, PLLC and for general information purposes only. SKV makes no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability or availability with respect to the website or the information, products, services, or related graphics contained on the website for any purpose. Any reliance you place on such information is strictly at your own risk.  

We disclaim all liability and responsibility arising from any reliance placed on such materials.

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