Let’s face it, most people do not look forward to meeting with an attorney. When the meeting is for the purpose of estate planning, people are even less excited. No one really wants to think about, or talk about, the possibility of their own death or incapacity. Although it may not be fun to talk about, creating an estate plan is essential. To make your initial appointment with an estate planning attorney as productive as possible, take some time now to prepare.
- Estate assets – set aside a some time to make a list of all your estate assets and all your debts. Not only will that provide your estate planning attorney with a good starting point but it will also allow you to have a great reference point when deciding how to divide those assets in your estate plan.
- Fiduciary roles – even the most simple estate plan has at least one fiduciary role – that of executor. Most have several such as a trustee, guardian of minor children, or agent for a power of attorney. Think about who you trust to fulfill these roles as well as who you feel has the experience or skill necessary to fulfill the role.
- Financial contribution – ask yourself how much your family depends on your financial contribution. Can they get by without it if you die tomorrow or do they need immediate access to assets or cash? The answer to these questions will significantly impact how your attorney structures your estate plan.
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