The Importance of Hiring an Estate Planning Attorney
By Space Coast Daily // June 16, 2019
An estate planning attorney refers to a lawyer’s specialization, helping clients get savings, assets, and affairs in order in preparation for the possibility of psychological or mental incapacity and eventual death.
Estate planning involves developing an effective plan to avoid or mitigate estate taxes, draft living trusts, and ensure the safety of assets from creditors of the beneficiaries when the client passes away.
In this post, you’ll learn the importance of hiring the right estate planning attorney for you. By doing so, you’ll be able to make sound decisions concerning your wealth and safeguard the future of your loved ones.
Your Peace of Mind
It’s good to know that when you die, everything you’ve planned will materialize with the help of a qualified, trusted, and experienced estate planning lawyer.
Take your time in finding and hiring a reputable and expert estate planning attorney in your area. You and your loved ones will be glad you did in the long run.
Here are some tips when hiring an estate planning attorney:
■ To avoid surprises or hidden fees, ask your prospective estate planning lawyer about the payment scheme, whether you’ll be charged a fixed fee or an hourly rate. Most estate planning lawyers charge a fixed fee for legal services, giving you the peace of mind knowing that the fixed cost is all that you’ll need to pay. However, also ask what the flat or fixed fee does and does not cover.
■ Hire a lawyer or law firm who can give you full assistance in funding your assets or revocable living trust to ensure that your assets are titled. While many estate planning lawyers create great estate plans, many fail to assist clients with fund revocable living trusts.
■ Hire an experienced estate planning attorney, like Brian Douglas, who can see the opportunity of your estate planning documents in any event that you become disabled or pass away. Experienced lawyers know how to create trusts, wills, healthcare documents, and powers of attorney that best deal with practical everyday situations that clients usually encounter. It will give you assurance knowing that the documents will be legally accepted or will work as needed.
Avoid Guardianship Issues
Guardianship issues arise if you don’t have a solid estate plan. An estate planning attorney or probate attorney can prepare health care directives and power of attorney concerning your retirement, assets, and other affairs.
Your lawyer will help you arrange a trusted person to take care of your wealth, affairs, and other resources if you become mentally incapacitated, critically ill, or unexpectedly die from an accident or as a result of violence.
Here are the qualities of a good estate planning lawyer who can help you avoid guardianship issues:
■ Possesses excellent communication and counseling skills, so you feel comfortable sharing your life’s intimate details and concerns.
■ A good lawyer is committed and passionate in practicing the estate planning area of law as evidenced by the number of estate planning clients handled.
■ Well versed with child welfare laws.
■ Shows genuine concern about your children’s future.
Of course, you want to ensure that your money will be well spent and distributed when you pass on. Your estate might lose more money in the long run as compared to the cost of hiring a qualified estate planning attorney now. Estate taxes that come due or a contentious probate process may incur more legal fees after your death, and your family members might wish that you could have spent the money on planning instead.
Keep You Updated with Estate Laws
Many lawyers view estate planning as a one-time transaction, drafting your requested documents and then sending them to you. Work with a lawyer who has a formal estate planning updating and maintenance program to ensure that your estate plan remains up-to-date, and make changes as needed.
It’s better to choose an estate planning lawyer who can contact you on a semi-annual or yearly basis to keep you updated about your estate plan.
Here are the things an estate planning attorney can provide:
■ Inform you of any changes in estate planning laws.
■ Explain the new or latest estate planning techniques.
■ Ask about your life changes requiring modifications in your documents.
■ Monitor the progress of your funding.
■ Provide legal advice to you and your beneficiaries about all the legal aspects concerning your current financial situation and health status, among others.
Hiring a good estate planning lawyer will provide you with the right knowledge, assistance, documents, and estate planning advice to ensure the future of your loved ones when you’re unable to make sound decisions or pass away. That’s why it’s crucial to consider the experience, good qualities, credentials, and reputation of the estate planning attorney you want to hire.
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