How to Choose an Estate Planning Lawyer: Top Five Tips to Consider

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You work hard throughout your life to provide financial safety and security for your loved ones. But, have you ever thought what would happen to these assets and money in case of your sudden demise? That is where estate planning plays its role.

Many people think that estate planning is a thing of wealthy families. But the truth is anyone and everyone can benefit from it. With estate planning, you become sure that your home and other financial assets are duly taken care of after your death, and your loved ones do not face any financial difficulty in your absence.

In simplest terms, estate planning is the passing down of assets from generation to generation. It helps to:

  • provide financial assistance to your immediate family
  • outline where your assets go in the event of your death
  • plan for any kind of incapacity
  • make provisions for minors or children with special needs
  • disinherit certain people who may be troublemakers
  • ease your funeral arrangements and funds

However, to execute a perfect will, you would need to consider hiring an estate planning lawyer who would look into how your estate will be inventoried, valued, dispersed, and taxed after your death in the most appropriate way.

Steer away from amateur service providers that offer lower service rates and are not authorized to practice as there can be financial and emotional consequences without their proper legal background.

To have your estate plan drafted in the right manner and get the best cross-border legal team on board, here is what you need to do:

  1.   Know Your Goal and Needs

Before finding an attorney, you must understand your requirements first. Be clear about what is the real motive behind your search for a lawyer. Is it devising the plan from scratch or updating the current one? Is it to designate beneficiaries or set up guardianship? Do you want to write a will or set up a trust deed? Once you know your goal, it is easier to find someone who can help you fulfill it.

  • Check with Friends and Family

When it comes to hiring a lawyer, recommendations from your close friends, family members, or colleagues can come as a great help. It is even more helpful if they have had hired one for financial scenarios like yours. Their first-hand experience with an attorney is worth considering as you can feel more trusted. If not, there are plenty of online sources to check ratings and feedbacks.

  • Ask About their Specialization

Many lawyers advise on estate planning issues, but it isn’t their area of expertise. They know their field of law but are not qualified to handle estate issues. To avoid complications or disappointments later, you must hire a team that specializes in estate planning. Since these people have spent years in this field, they have mastered the A to Z of estate planning, including tax liabilities arising henceforth.

  • Confirm about Estate Administration

The attorney you choose is the first person your family consults after your death for financial discussions. They can be the executor of asset distribution, pay off of your remaining debts, etc. Thus, they must be proficient enough and understand estate administration well to provide the assistance needed by your family.

  • Ensure Flexibility in Planning

Some lawyers provide you periodic reviews of your financial affairs in exchange for small fees and help you make adjustments in the plan if necessary. As your monetary status can vary depending on changes in life situations, a close look every six to twelve months into your finances can be beneficial. There can be new legislative amendments as well, requiring you to make changes.

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