How to Find an Estate Planning Attorney: A Step-by-Step Guide

Knowing how to find an estate attorney is a lot like knowing whether somebody is trustworthy or not. It requires you to have a keen sense of character and to be able to tell whether someone will be there when you need them.

In the worst of cases, you are not going to be able to tell if your estate attorney has done does their job or not, after all – it will be your heirs, your family & children who will need to work with them.  

Estate attorneys ensure, through planning, that a person’s assets, debts, and property are taken care of after they pass away.  In short, they are responsible for making sure everything you want to be passed down is passed down correctly. Most of all, they help you to make sure your last wishes are followed exactly as you wanted.

Keep reading below to learn how to find an estate lawyer you can trust!

Ask for Referrals

The best way to find someone worth hiring to handle your final wishes is to ask around. Almost everybody should have an estate lawyer, and chances are that the people around you have done their research on theirs. Simply ask them who they went with and look into the lawyer yourself!

Asking Other Professionals May Get Better Results

Nobody knows professionals like other professionals. They tend to have a keen sense of who to trust, and the quality of other peoples’ work. When you first start looking for an estate lawyer, you could try to get referrals from other kinds of lawyers.

A personal injury lawyer or a corporate lawyer likely will not have much particular interest at stake in giving you a fair assessment of an estate lawyer’s office. Check your network. You might be able to get both an honest opinion and a skillful evaluation of estate lawyers just by asking other lawyers about them.

Community Referrals Guarantee They Are Trustworthy

You are a part of your community, and you should take advantage of it. Talk to the people who know you about your search for an estate lawyer. There is a lot of people that end up using or needing an estate planning lawyer at some point in their life, and if someone already hired an estate lawyer they trust, it is at least possible that you will be able to develop a positive relationship with that lawyer too.

Research How to Find an Estate Lawyer Online

In addition to flexing your network, you may also wish to research estate lawyers online. Most law firms have reviews from actual clients either on their website or on their Google page. These reviews are usually from clients who felt compelled enough, positively or negatively, to share their experiences.

Read up on different law firms, including what they specialize in and what they are known for. That way, you will get a sense of how each law office is different and what you need from the one you go with. 

Besides using your favorite search engines (Google, Bing, Yahoo), you can also use websites like NOLO, FindLaw, and AVVO. These websites specialize in finding lawyers based on location and specialty. They also contain contact info and reviews for each law firm.

**Bonus, if they have a blog, like ours, you will be well-read on what goes into estate law too!

You Need an Estate Lawyer that You Can Trust

Knowing how to find an estate attorney is a lot like knowing how to trust a person. You need to talk to them and get a sense of their character. You also need to see examples of how they manage their work, and whether people tend to be satisfied with it.

You can reach out to us to schedule a time to speak about what you are looking for in an estate lawyer. We understand how important family is and will work to make sure everyone in it is taken care of when you are not here to do it yourself.

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5 Facts to Help You Understanding the Importance of Estate Planning

5 Facts to Help You Understanding the Importance of Estate Planning.

When is the last time you stayed in a castle?

That is the first thing you picture when someone starts talking about their estate, right?

It would be nice if we all had several million dollars and a boat to leave for each of our kids. But you do not need to be on a first-name basis with Bill Gates to start deciding what to do with your assets in the event of your death.

We have put together these five important facts to help you understand estate planning. Life is unpredictable, and you do not want to leave your family unprepared.

Keep reading to learn more.

You Have an Estate Even if You Rent

Your estate is everything you own and all the financial information attached to your name.

The word “estate” usually sends people daydreaming about mansions and golf courses. But if you own a car and have a bank account, those count as part of your estate, legally speaking.

Even if you are still working your way out of debt and renting an apartment, everyone has an estate worth planning.

Your Will is Just the Beginning

Estate planning is a detailed process that takes time. It is not just one document, and there is so much more to plan besides which kid gets your novelty coin collection.

Planning an estate typically includes:

  • Assigning financial power of attorney
  • Assigning medical power of attorney
  • Creating advance directives for your healthcare
  • Putting aside money for funeral expenses
  • Creating a living trust

Do not stress! Start slowly with a will, and keep scheduling the time to add more as you keep thinking about what you want.

If You Do not Decide, Uncle Sam Will

Anyone who dies without a will or any kind of estate planning leaves the future of all of their assets to the state government.

This does not mean the state government takes everything you have. But it does mean you have no way of knowing which relatives will get what.

It is Not as Expensive as You Think

You do not have to spend a fortune to plan your estate.

Though there are legal fees involved with filing these documents, paying ahead of time reduces expenses for your family after your death. While you are spacing out appointments to estate plan with your family lawyer, you will have time to save up for these fees.

You Are Never Too Young to Start

Estate planning is not just for AARP members.

Because estate planning is a process, the sooner you start, the better. And while death is not a light-hearted subject, it is still a significant financial event you need to be prepared for.

Think of it as investing in your future and investing in your family. The sooner you start the estate planning process, the more time you will have to figure out every last detail.

Still Do Not Understand Estate Planning?

For even more information to help you understand estate planning, check out more from our blog.

Better yet, do not wait.

Schedule a consultation with one of our skilled estate lawyers today.

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