Have you asked the question, “How do I choose an estate planning attorney near me?” Choosing the right estate planning attorney for your family can be a tricky process, which often puts people off the topic entirely and leads to the mistake of failing to engage in estate planning at all. It does not, however, have to be a tough road.
What it comes down to is the answer to one basic question. How do you choose an estate planning attorney? You choose the attorney whose experience level and skill in working with your personal situation and meeting your needs makes the process easier and ensures that it is done thoroughly.
One of the most important criteria in choosing an estate planning attorney can be finding someone with appropriate experience. This may not necessarily mean choosing the attorney with the longest amount of time in practice. After all, an attorney with 30 years of experience may have less experience in a specific area of estate planning that is important to you than an attorney with 10 years of experience who focuses heavily in that area. The key can be to choose an attorney whose combination of time in practice and specific skill set is best suited to your family.
If you are married, both you and your spouse may need to have estate plans in place. This helps to ensure that the other person may be taken care of and knows what to do. Framing it this way, a desire to make life easier in the future for a surviving spouse can be a good place to start a conversation about estate planning with your spouse.
Choosing an estate planning attorney who can speak directly with your spouse, reassure him or her, and work with both of you to meet your needs may be the best way to move forward. If both of you are comfortable, the process can be easier. When you are choosing an estate planning attorney, involving your spouse in the process may be a good idea. It can also help to ask potential attorneys about their experience and recommendations for your specific situation. If you have had a long marriage, and share all of your children, estate planning may look one way, but if you or your spouse have children from a prior marriage, you may want to divide your estate among them while also providing for your spouse if he or she outlives you.
Ask questions about these topics upfront to ensure you are choosing the right attorney for your family. Our office can guide a family through their estate planning options. Please contact our office today to schedule a meeting with Attorney Alan Hougum.