How Do We Help You With Estate Planning?
During your initial meeting with one of our attorneys (we call this a Family Wealth Planning Session), we’ll spend time getting to know you and what’s important to you. We’ll make sure we understand your goals and objectives, and we’ll educate you about what would happen if something were to happen to you today. For some individuals or families who meet with us, their current plan is what we call the State’s plan. That means there is no written plan in place.
Other folks who come to us have an existing plan, but they’re not sure whether it does what they want…or they know for sure it’s outdated and needs to be brought current. Either way, we’ll review the current plan in detail, and you’ll get informed about what your current plan does and what you might want to change about it. Before your Family Wealth Planning Session, we will ask you to complete a Personal Resource Map (“PRM” or “homework”), which will help you to get clear about what you own and what you have to think about when it comes to estate planning. It also helps the attorney you’ll be meeting with to be fully prepared to meet with you and make the best use of your time in our office.
The foundation of an estate plan will sometimes include a revocable living trust; you transfer title of your property into this trust for your benefit while you are still alive. One of the benefits of having a living trust is that, when done correctly and properly maintained, your estate plan should help your family to avoid the cost, hassle, and time spent going through the probate process. It can also help to minimize estate taxes, or to eliminate them altogether.
For people with other needs, we can also provide more advanced estate planning services.