As legislators find more and more areas to regulate, laws have become much more complex than just a few years ago. It’s not unreasonable to speculate that this trend will continue and laws will become still more complex over the next years. It is for this reason that experts agree that you shouldn’t gamble with your family’s future in terms of ensuring that assets are properly transferred to your loved ones. An experienced estate planning attorney can help to ensure a smooth transition to the intended beneficiaries of your estate, and avoid costly and time-consuming problems that make wealth transfer unnecessarily difficult.
Those with simple estates may not need a great deal of estate planning, but more than likely, they still need some, and having it done by a professional can save time and money at the time that it’s needed. Many people believe that they can save money by downloading documents online. This can often result in a defective estate plan, which can take much more money and time to unwind that simply having it done properly on the front end.
Many people face the problem of trying to determine if they have a simple plan. Situations become complicated quickly if a spouse has passed, if there are children, if there’s a second marriage, or if real estate is involved. Relying on a document that has been found on the web may be high-stakes gambling with your personal assets. Particularly given the fact that it’s very hard to tell the genesis of any documents found on the web. You may not know who prepared it, whether it’s actually appropriate for your state, or if it was even prepared by an attorney who knows something about estate planning.
For some clients, a trust may be the most appropriate estate planning tool to use. Without the input of an experienced estate planning attorney, you may not know if you need one, or if so, how to properly structure it so that it does not end up being null and void.
For those with significant estates, the very real possibility of having to give a large portion of your estate to the government in the form of estate taxes should be reason enough to seek professional assistance.
Ultimately, it’s your choice. However, your loved ones will be appreciative if you ensure that your desires are properly documented.
Reference: Axcess News (August 2017) �The Very Real Dangers of Doing Your Own Estate Planning