Why You Should Hire an Estate Planning Attorney

An Estate Planning Attorney is a lawyer who helps clients craft binding legal documents such as trusts and wills, as well as provide guidance in other related areas of law. He or she also understands state and federal laws that affect people’s estates, trusts, probate and inheritances. An estate planning attorney can help a client set up an estate plan that aligns with their specific wishes, while taking into account any potential taxes or fees that may need to be paid.

The first step in finding an estate planning attorney is to ask friends and family for recommendations. You can also check with your local or state bar association to find a list of attorneys that are licensed in your area. Once you’ve found a few options, research the attorneys and their fee rates. Some attorneys will charge a flat rate to write up an estate plan for their clients, while others may charge an hourly rate for every time they work on an individual’s case.

While some people may think that estate plans are only for the wealthy, everyone has an “estate” of sorts. This includes all of the assets that you own, such as property, vehicles, checking and savings accounts, investments, life insurance policies, furniture and personal possessions. A properly prepared estate plan can ensure that your loved ones are taken care of and that your wishes are carried out after your death.

A good estate planning attorney should welcome your questions and provide answers that you fully understand (not speak in legalese that you can’t translate). According to Zimmet, if an attorney doesn’t make you feel comfortable or doesn’t take the time to thoroughly answer your questions, it may be time to find a different professional.

Many states have different laws regarding inheritance and estate taxes, so it’s important to have an attorney that is familiar with state and local law in addition to the federal law. An experienced estate planning attorney can help you avoid costly mistakes and ensure that your wishes are carried out as intended.

An attorney who specializes in estate planning can also help you determine what types of legal instruments are right for your situation, as well as review any existing documents to ensure they’re accurate and up-to-date. In general, it’s a good idea to update your estate plan after any major life event, such as the birth of a child, marriage or divorce, or a change in financial status. It’s also a good idea to schedule a regular review of your estate plan every 3 – 5 years.

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Long Beach, CA, 90807
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