Estate planning attorneys help clients manage the 2 most important aspects of our clients’ lives: their families and their money. This means we must know as much as possible about our clients, more than almost anyone.
A friend recently chuckled when I told them that if they want to be my estate planning client, then they need to talk to me as they would their doctor and then tell me what their doctor reported; talk to me like they would their tax accountant and then give me copies of their tax returns; talk to me like they would their financial planner and then give me copies of all of their financial records; talk to be about their children, siblings, partners, and parents and then tell me what they don’t want them to know; and, finally, give me the complete contact information for each one of the persons we just discussed so that I can verify, within the bounds of attorney-client privilege, HIPAA, and other fiduciary rules, the information provided with each person.
And THAT is why to consider preparing a Last Will and Testament or a Trust as a DIY task is NOT funny …
Unless you’re a doctor who can diagnose their own maladies, an estate planning attorney who is also a tax accountant, and a Certified Financial Planner with licenses to buy all the financial products available to amass wealth, AND you have no loved ones or potential beneficiaries.
And THAT is why having a credible, experienced estate planning attorney is important for 99.9% of adults…
One of our instruments is called a Trust for a reason.