Watch Our Nursing Home Masterclass
estate planning and elder law

How to Choose an Estate Planning Attorney

How to Choose an Estate Planning Attorney
Estate planning is critical to ensuring your legacy and wishes are respected. Choosing the right estate planning attorney is essential to this process. This article provides tips for selecting an attorney to serve your needs best and guide you through crafting a comprehensive estate plan.

Understanding the Role of an Estate Planning Attorney

An estate planning attorney focuses on helping clients create a plan for managing their assets and affairs after their passing. This often includes drafting wills, setting up trusts and ensuring that your estate is handled according to your wishes. The right attorney can help you avoid probate, reduce estate taxes and provide peace of mind. Beck, Lenox and Stolzer Estate Planning and Elder Law, LLC, knows firsthand the stress that people can feel when looking for a good attorney. For that reason, we want to provide information on how to choose an estate planning attorney.
Estate law is complex and constantly evolving. An attorney experienced in estate planning will have the knowledge and skill set to manage your estate and trust needs effectively.

Assessing Your Estate Planning Needs

Before choosing an attorney, consider the complexity of your estate. Do you have a simple estate, or are multiple properties, businesses and beneficiaries involved? The complexity of your estate will determine the level of guidance you need from your attorney.

Questions to Ask Potential Estate Planning Attorneys

When meeting with potential attorneys, ask about their experience in estate planning. If they practice in several areas of law, what percentage of their business is the estate planning? Inquire about the types of clients they typically work with and their approach to crafting an estate plan. This will help you gauge if their experience aligns with your needs.

The Role of Trusts in Your Estate Plan

Discuss the role of trusts in your estate plan with the attorney. Trusts can be essential for managing your assets, avoiding probate and reducing estate taxes. Your attorney should be able to advise on the right type of trust for your situation.

Understanding Attorney Fees and Billing Practices

Ask each attorney about their fee structure. Many estate-planning attorneys charge a flat fee for certain services, while others may bill hourly. Understanding how the attorney will charge for their services is crucial in selecting the right professional.

The Benefits of a Comprehensive Estate Plan

A comprehensive estate plan goes beyond just a will. It can include trusts, power of attorney and healthcare directives. Ensure that the attorney you choose is adept at creating a plan that covers all aspects of your estate. Often, the attorney will offer a package that incorporates all of those documents.

Evaluating the Attorney’s Communication Style

Your relationship with your estate planning attorney will be personal, as they will be privy to the personal details of your life and finances. Choose an attorney you feel comfortable communicating with and who understands your unique needs and concerns. If they seem impatient or not fully interested in what you are saying, go elsewhere.

Seeking Referrals and Checking Credentials

Ask for referrals from friends, family, or a financial advisor. Check the attorney’s credentials and ensure that they are in good standing with the state bar association. Referral services can also be a valuable resource in finding a qualified attorney. In this high tech age, check out their online reviews as well. Just be cautious if an attorney has only the highest reviews across the board. No one can be perfect!

Making the Final Decision: Choosing the Right Estate Planning Attorney

How to choose an estate planning attorney ultimately comes down to trust and comfort. You want to feel confident in their capacity and comfortable with their approach. Take the time to consult with several attorneys and choose the one that best aligns with your needs and values.

Estate planning is critical to securing your legacy and protecting your loved ones. If you’re seeking experienced guidance in crafting your estate plan, schedule a consultation with our law firm today. Beck, Lenox and Stolzer attorneys are ready to assist you in creating a plan that meets your unique needs and provides peace of mind for the future. If you reside in Missouri or the MetroEast area in Illinois, click here to schedule a call today!

Subscribe to Our Free Monthly E-Newsletter & Blog Digest!

Recent Posts

Need to Email Us?

If we are currently working with you or your family member, please DO NOT use this email as it may take longer to route your inquiry to the specific person working on your file. Instead, please call our office at (636) 946-7899 so we may better serve you

For all other inquiries: