As the old saying goes, “only two things are certain in this life: Death and Taxes.” However, proper estate planning can help you avoid a variety of problems for your family after you pass. If you want your heirs to have the freedom to enjoy the assets you left them with, an estate plan can help them avoid the expensive and time-consuming process of probate.
When you choose to work with an experienced Chicago estate planning attorney, your lawyer will be able to create a plan that meets your goals and objectives for the distribution of your property. Often, this involves trusts and beneficiary designations. It also includes the creation of advance directives such as health care proxies, living wills, and durable power of attorneys. In addition to addressing the distribution of your assets, your attorney will likely consider income, gift, and generation-skipping transfer taxes in connection with the planning process.
The process of hiring an estate planning attorney can be a long one, but it’s important to find the right fit for your unique situation. You should start by asking the attorney if they’ve worked with people in your situation before and how they handled it. It’s also a good idea to ask for references.
Once you’ve found the right lawyer for you, you can schedule an initial consultation. During this meeting, you and the attorney will discuss your goals, needs, and assets. The lawyer will then take the time to understand your situation and present you with your options. This initial meeting usually takes about 1 – 2 hours.
After you’ve decided on a plan, your lawyer will draft documents that reflect your desires. They will then submit the drafts for your review and approval. You and your lawyer will then have a final meeting to sign the documents and make any necessary changes. Once the documents are signed, they will become effective.
You and your attorney will probably want to review the documents on a regular basis. This is so that you’re aware of any changes to your circumstances and so that the documents reflect current law.
A well-drafted estate plan will address a variety of issues that could come up in the future, such as potential healthcare problems and unforeseen legal proceedings. It will also help your heirs avoid the costly and stressful process of probate, as it will clearly state how to divide your assets.
A good estate planning attorney will help you prepare a comprehensive document that addresses your needs and concerns, as well as those of your family members. Whether you’re looking for a Chicago estate planning lawyer or a Boston probate attorney, we can connect you with the best attorneys in your area. Our patented selection process is based on peer influenced reviews and professional achievement to ensure you’re working with an elite attorney. To get started, simply fill out our form to connect with a top estate planning attorney in your area!