Estate planning involves a lot of sensitive, personal issues… issues like who gets your assets when you die, who will care for your children if you die prematurely, and what kind of life support treatments you would want to receive.
To ensure a robust estate plan that reflects your real wishes, it’s advisable to work with an estate planning attorney. If you’ve never sought an estate planning attorney before, however, you may not know exactly what to look for? We’re happy to provide you with a checklist:
Finding the Right Estate Planning Lawyer
As you interview someone from an estate planning law firm, here are a few things to inquire about.
- Focus on estate planning. Ideally, your lawyer should be a specialist. After all, estate planning is complex, and you want an attorney who is immersed in that world day-in and day-out. Don’t settle for someone who devotes 90 percent of their practice to car accident cases. Instead, seek someone who is a full-time estate planning lawyer.
- Experience in the field. Along the same lines you’ll probably want to find an estate planning law firm that boasts a respectable track record serving individuals and families.
- Locality. Estate planning laws and regulations can vary quite a bit from state to state. For this reason, you probably don’t want to go with one of the big, nationwide firms. Pick a regional firm that knows the particulars of their area laws and legal provisions.
- Comprehensive services. Think estate planning is all about making a will? Think again. You’ll want to find an attorney who can help you understand all the ins and outs of advance health directives, trusts, Powers of Attorney, and beyond. Make sure your estate planning firm can help you with a full range of documents, resources, and tools.
- Tax planning. Another important part of the estate planning process is considering tax ramifications. Whenever possible, you’ll want to minimize your tax burden, ensuring your heirs receive the full benefit of the estate. Before choosing a lawyer, ask about tax strategies they might employ.
- Reviews and testimonials. Always spend some time browsing the law firm’s online reviews and endorsements before you decide to hire them. While online reviews are not always trustworthy, they usually give you a pretty clear idea of whether the firm offers a satisfying client experience.
- Referrals. Along the same lines: As you interview a firm, ask if you can speak with one of their other clients. Referrals and recommendations can reveal much about the firm’s quality of service. Don’t hesitate to ask for referrals, and don’t hesitate to follow up on those referrals.
- Friendly, attentive service. Your estate planning lawyer is someone you’ll be working with pretty closely. As such, it’s important that you find someone whose communication style is appealing to you. If you meet a lawyer and simply don’t care for the way they present themselves, that’s reason enough to continue your search elsewhere.
Use these pointers to guide your search for a qualified estate planning law firm. And if you need someone who specializes in estate planning law in California, give Singh Law Firm a call.
Find an Estate Planning Law Firm in Fremont, CA
Whether you’re looking for a living trust attorney or simply someone who can answer your questions about the estate planning process, we hope you’ll keep Singh Law Firm in mind. We are proud to be one of the top estate law firms serving Fremont, CA and beyond. Reach out to us whenever you’re ready to schedule an appointment with an estate planning pro.