In the Internet age, everything can be done online, including buying groceries, shopping for clothes and redecorating your home. People can even complete their wills online. With cheap do-it-yourself options, some wonder if hiring an estate planning attorney is worth the price.
An estate plan includes more than just a will
Many online services offer do-it-yourself wills, but a will does not complete a plan. A plan includes a set of documents, uniquely tailored to your situation. You might need a living trust, long-term care planning, a plan for disability or death, asset protection and more.
A cheap online will does not include everything you need. Ultimately, you may end up paying more money in the future for fees and taxes. An estate planning attorney can help you create a complete plan with considerations to future changes and probate.
Your life changes and so should an estate plan. An attorney can help you modify an existing plan to reflect new heirs such as grandchildren, or changing families due to divorce. An estate plan can also protect your assets. Without legal guidance, nursing home costs can eat up all your money and heirs may misuse inheritance.
Oversights can be serious
An estate plan not only protects your legacy, it can protect you. An attorney can help you appoint a durable power of attorney and establish an advance health care directive so your personal and financial matters are taken care of in case of sickness or an accident. You can obtain the medical care you want, even if you cannot communicate your wishes.
Choosing the wrong trustee or agent can lead to issues and arguments among family members. The last thing you want is for your estate to be litigated when you are gone. An experienced estate planning attorney can help you understand the qualities to look for in a trustee or agent.