5 Questions to Ask Your Estate Planning Attorney Before You Get Started
Typically, people don’t look forward to estate planning. This is primarily because they associate it with death, which isn’t always easy to think about. However, moving forward with an estate plan is critical, especially if you are a newlywed.
Contrary to what you might think, the purpose of estate planning isn’t simply to pass down your assets. It’s about protecting yourself and your family.
To be successful in planning your estate, you’ll need to make wise decisions and ensure that you ask the right questions. If you partner with a trustworthy, reliable estate planning attorney, you may not be required to make many of the decisions on your own.
Find out if your estate planning attorney is the right fit for you and your situation by asking the 5 estate planning questions we’ve outlined in this article.
1. How Much of Your Practice Is Devoted to Estate Planning?
Asking how much of their practice is devoted to estate planning is one of the best questions to ask an estate attorney because it will give you an idea of how much experience your attorney has with planning estates.
If your attorney answers that only 15 percent of their practice is devoted to estate planning and other elder law matters, he or she may not have the expertise you’re looking for, as the majority of their experience lies in other areas.
2. Will You Provide Estate Planning Documentation for My Review?
No matter how experienced your estate planning attorney may be, it never hurts to review all of the documentation before finalizing it. Reviewing the documentation yourself gives you the opportunity to ensure that everything is arranged as you specified.
3. Do You Provide Formal Updates and Maintenance?
Changes can happen at any time in your life, so reviewing your estate plan either semi-annually or annually is important. In addition to any personal changes, there may also be changes to taxes or other laws in your state, which could require adjustments to your current estate plan.
4. Will You Quote a Fixed Price?
Establishing a fixed price contract or quote up front is in your best interest when dealing with an estate planning attorney (or any other attorney, for that matter) because hourly charges can add up – and fast.
Ensure that you inquire about fixed pricing up front, so you’re not caught off guard when the bill comes.
5. If I Have a Question or Concern and You Are Not Available, Will Someone Else in Your Office Be Able to Assist Me?
Even though most state planning lawyers will provide their personal contact information to make themselves available when needed, this is still a smart question to ask.
That way, you’ll know who to ask for in the instance that your estate planning attorney isn’t available.
Make Sure Your Estate Planning Attorney Is the Right Fit
No two situations are the same, but asking your estate planning attorney these 5 questions can give you a lot of valuable insight which will help you determine whether or not they are the best option for you.
Looking for more information about how to get started planning your estate?
Schedule a free consultation with an estate planning attorney today to discuss your needs.