Streamline the process
These are the basics like, where you are from, your date of birth, phone number, address, etc. as well as all of that same information for your family, specifically those family members who will be included in your estate plan.
When planning your estate, you’ll need to convey what is actually in your estate. What assets do you have? This could include accounts like bank accounts, retirement accounts, and investment accounts. It usually includes property like homes or other real estate. It can include vehicles like cars, motorcycles, and RVs. Finally, it could include things like family heirlooms, jewelry, or other things you feel are valuable to you and your family.
If you come prepared to explain which assets you are looking to pass on to your beneficiaries, it will help make your first and subsequent meetings much more efficient and effective.
The estate plan will outline who inherits from you, how much do they inherit, when they inherit, and the conditions around this inheritance. The plan will also distinguish who will act as your agent for things like your trust, power of attorney for finances, and you medical advanced directive.
If you are not prepared with this information, it could cause the meeting to run longer than you may have anticipated and take more time to put together the estate plan.
The process to put together and complete an estate plan depends on the complexity of your assets, inheritance wishes, and your schedule. It can take anywhere from days, to weeks, to months.
Coming prepared with the information we’ve outlined so far will help streamline that process for you. If you have an upcoming vacation or health reasons that would require you to fast-track your estate plan, an attorney can usually accommodate these situations.
All of this can typically be handled in two or three meetings:
Gather your biographical information, your assets, and inheritance wishes. The attorney will typically draft your estate plan and send it to you to review.
Go over your estate plan, review details, and check for any errors or omissions. This meeting is used to make sure you are comfortable with your estate plan, that you understand it, and at this point, you could end up signing and finalizing your estate plan.
If things have changed between the first and second meeting, it may require additional edits to be made, which could lead to a third meeting.
If more changes were needed after the 2nd meeting, the 3rd meeting would be used to review those changes, finalize, and sign your estate plan.
Depending on the complexity of your estate plan, it may require more meetings to iron out details.