Estate planning attorneys are essential to protecting yourself and your loved ones.
Attorneys tend to get a bad “rap,” deservedly or undeservedly.
I know numerous unflattering jokes about attorneys.
Like all comedy and humor, what makes them funny is the hint of truth and relatability.
Okay, here is one of my favorite attorney jokes.
In fact, I usually tell this one after someone has already prattled off half a dozen for my enjoyment.
“Those are all great ones, but you know, there are only two attorney jokes.”
“The rest are true.”
While lawyers can be greedy and manipulative, every profession has its outliers.
Most attorneys simply want to provide a quality service to their clients using their expertise.
According to a recent Digital Crime article titled “The Benefits of Having a Will and Estate Planning Lawyer,” an experienced estate planning can be the difference between having a successful estate plan that works or leaving a big old mess for your loved ones.
Because estate planning attorneys understand the federal laws and state laws where they practice, they are able to quickly apply their knowledge to your specific situation.
It is likely you have an idea of who you would like to inherit if you die and who you would like to make decisions (medical and financial) on your behalf if you become incapacitated.
It is unlikely you know the language and requirements to legally accomplish your goals.
While you may be able to piece together a passable plan, there are no do-overs if mistakes are uncovered after you are left incapacitated or have died.
Fill-in-the-blank plans on the internet are rarely sufficient.
Your unique assets, family dynamics, and wishes must all be taken into consideration.
While it may seem overwhelming to think about death and what will happen to your belongings when you die, an experienced estate planning attorney is able to compassionately counsel and guide you through the process.
If you have a large estate, you will likely need to account for taxes.
An experienced estate planning attorney will be able to devise a plan and strategy to minimize your tax liability and account for necessary payments and expenses associated with estate administration.
Those with complicated family relationships cannot afford to forgo the help of an experienced lawyer.
Errors or omissions in legal documents can provide ample opportunity for a will contest.
Estate battles are not only emotionally draining but financially draining as well.
The final reason experienced estate planning attorneys are essential to estate planning involves how they maintain awareness of new laws and can translate how these and personal life changes impact estate planning documents.
Most individuals are unaware of how the world around them specifically affects their estate planning goals.
Admittedly, working with experienced estate planning attorneys is initially more costly than creating a plan yourself, but doing so can save you and your loved ones time, energy, and emotional stress in the future.
Reference: Digital Crime (April 12, 2023) “The Benefits of Having a Will and Estate Planning Lawyer”