Estate planning is not necessarily the most fun thing to think about. That is why folks put it off for years until some new pressure forces their hand. That being said, once you establish your estate plan, it is much easier to edit and adapt it than it is to redraft it all from scratch. That means that the process is much easier the earlier you start. So, what do you want to ask your Sheffield Village estate planning attorney when you meet to start working on your plan?
Is estate planning your primary area of focus?
Estate planning and elder law are not the most exciting areas of legal practice. Estate planning lawyers do not have movies written about how we drew up a great estate plan for our now-deceased client and how pleased the family is to have all their assets painlessly distributed. It is an important area of the law, however, and it is also a highly technical area of the law. A small mistake in wording can void an entire trust. In cases of special needs trusts, this has actually resulted in lawsuits filed against disabled Americans who are collecting social security. The stakes are higher than you may think.
Have your estate plans ever been challenged in court?
You actually will want an attorney whose estate plan has been challenged in court before. Such attorneys can defend their estate plans against claims made by the IRS or other interested parties as to the legality of the plan. An attorney who has defended his estate plan has the experience to defend your estate plan if it is challenged. Challenges to estate plans are hard to win, but not uncommon. You want an attorney with that experience. Obviously, though, not an attorney whose estate plans have been voided by the court on numerous occasions.
Are you insured?
Estate laws are constantly changing and can be impacted by both federal and state law. This creates a situation where sometimes, estate plans are voided for cause by the court leaving the client in an awkward position. This awkward position can cost them money. Estate planning lawyers, like most professionals, carry professional malpractice insurance. If something happens with your estate plan, you want to be sure that your attorney has insurance so that you are not the one who foots the bill for their mistake.
Are you executing the estate plan or simply drawing it up?
Drawing up an estate plan is hard work. Executing an estate plan is harder. Not all attorneys will execute the plans they draw up. You want one firm handling the whole thing. It is less efficient to have a lawyer execute the estate plan of a different lawyer.
Call an Ohio Estate Planning Attorney Today
Estate planning is a very complex, technical practice of law. You should place your trust in experienced attorneys who have survived and adapted to the tax plans of multiple administrations, which result in massive changes to the law every four years or so. Call Kryszak Law Firm, Co., LLP today to set up an appointment and we can begin discussing your options today.