Estate planning does not merely involve planning about what should be done with your property after your death but it also involves what should be done with your property if in case, you lose your mental equilibrium or become mentally incapacitated. More often than not mental disequilibrium is often not discussed during the estate planning is in progress. This could be a grave mistake as statistics reveal that though the life expectancy has gone up, people may not be living healthier.
You simply cannot rule out accidents that could make you incapable of taking financial and personal decisions. As such, it is best to address both planning for death and also planning for incapacity. You need to find a competent estate planning attorney because one missing signature or one wrong word could drastically alter the entire purpose and intent of any will or trust. Once you have identified a good estate planning attorney, you should ask him a few vital questions for determining if they are really qualified for giving you legal assistance.
Does the Attorney Primarily Concentrate on Estate Planning?
If you are only consulting an estate planning lawyer for just a simple will, health care or power of attorney documents, you may think that this question is not relevant or important from your perspective. An attorney having a broad practice including simple estate planning, as well as, probate issues would just work fine in this particular situation. However, if you are having a complex financial or family situation or if you have a taxable estate, then it is essential to choose an attorney whose main focus is definitely estate planning including estate tax reduction.
How Experienced is the Estate Planning Attorney?
Experience in the field is a vital factor while identifying the right estate planning attorney. Exposure and experience are the keys to success. Gehreslaw.com can help with litigation thanks to the expertise and experience of their seasoned lawyers. The trusts, wills, health care documents and the powers of attorney used by lawyers who have an extensive experience in the business, would have been revised as well as tweaked for handling everyday situations. You could get immense mental peace when you know that the legal documents prepared by the lawyer for you would work when they are required.
Does the Attorney help his Clients with Effectively Funding All their Assets into the Revocable Living Trust?
Some attorneys are able to come up with excellent estate plans but they are not able to help their clients with the issue of funding their revocable living trust. No matter how well-drafted, a trust would be of practically no use after your death if all your assets are not yet titled in the trust’s name while you are supposed to be alive.
Some law firms would be having funding departments or hiring full-time funding assistants while others would be giving you detailed and all-inclusive written instructions. There would be some others who would simply mention the importance and the necessity of funding but they would not give any kind of concrete guidance to the clients. It is mandatory to work with an estate planning attorney who would oversee the entire funding process. It would be a good idea to pay an extra fee to the attorney for overseeing the funding process.
You must choose your estate planning attorney with a lot of care. Always keep the above-mentioned questions on mind. Moreover, estate planning attorneys must contact all their clients annually or semi-annually and keep them updated with various changes in law and explain the novel estate planning techniques and methods, enquire about life changes which would need modifications in the documents belonging to the clients and examine the progress related to the client’s funding process. This would make sure that your estate plan would stay updated and abreast with the latest and would be effective when required.