First responders put their lives on the line every day to keep us safe. This Friday, October 19, lawyers from Capital One Financial Corporation and Ballard Spahr will say “thank you” by sponsoring a Wills for Heroes program where first responders from Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Washington, D.C., can receive free wills and estate planning services.

The event begins at 1 p.m. at the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Rescue Squad, 5020 Battery Lane, Bethesda, and nearly 50 first responders already have made appointments. The Wills for Heroes program was established shortly after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The program provides free wills, living wills, and health care and financial powers of attorney to first responders and their spouses or domestic partners.

“Ballard Spahr is honored to participate with Capital One on this important project,” said Michael S. Waldron, who leads Ballard Spahr’s Mortgage Banking Group and will be volunteering at the clinic. “It means a great deal to all of us to give back in a meaningful way to those who do so much for our community.”

Since the program’s inception, volunteer lawyers nationwide have readied more than 10,000 estate planning documents for first responders. The first responders complete an estate planning questionnaire before they arrive at the event. Attorneys use those forms to prepare the documents, and wills are signed and notarized on the spot. The whole process takes about an hour per person.

“Capital One is proud to partner with Ballard Spahr on the Wills for Heroes program to serve our first responders, and give back to those who put the lives and safety of others above their own every day,” said Steve Gannon, Executive Vice President, Deputy General Counsel, Capital One. “Pro bono service is an important part of Capital One’s Investing for Good approach to providing support and resources for local families and individuals, and a meaningful way for our associates to serve their communities.”

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