Estate Planning - Frequently Asked Questions
What Happens In An Initial Consultation?
During that meeting we will discuss your personal and family situation, review your assets and how they’re titled, discuss what concerns you may have and your priorities. It’s an opportunity for the attorney and client to get to know each other and see if they are a good fit. Typically after that consultation the attorney will have a better idea of your situation and the type of estate plan that will work best for you and be able to quote a fee.
What Should I Do To Prepare For My First Meeting?
We have prepared a comprehensive Estate Planning Questionnaire that will walk you through all the information necessary for your consultation. If you bring the completed checklist to your consultation, the first 30 minutes is free of charge. Please choose the form that is best for your situation.
- Download the Estate Planning Questionnaire for Individuals
- Download the Estate Planning Questionnaire for a Couple
Is There A Fee For The Initial Consultation?
Our office offers a 30-minute initial consultation free of charge, provided that you bring with you the completed Estate Planning Questionnaire (see above). If additional time is needed beyond the first 30 minutes our standard hourly rate will apply. We find that if you have completed our questionnaire, thirty minutes generally is enough time for the attorney to review your situation, determine the type of plan that would best suit your needs and answer general questions. Of course, we're happy to schedule a longer consultation, simply let us know when you schedule your appointment if you'd like additional time so we can plan accordingly.
How Do I Schedule A Consultation?
Scheduling a consultation is easy! Simply call our office at (352) 327-8411 or you can use our online scheduling service. When you schedule online you'll receive an email confirmation, appointment reminders and information to prepare for your upcoming appointment.
Who Should Attend The Consultation?
It is a requirement that the client attend the meeting. Sometimes adult children or other family members will contact us for advice on the best way to assist their parents or older family members with estate planning. The person whose estate plan we are preparing must be present at all meetings and understand and consent to the process. If this is not possible, we may need to discuss other options such as Guardianship.
For married couples, it's important that both spouses attend the meeting together.
If at all possible, young children should be left at home.
Sometimes a client will want a friend or relative to attend to answer questions, review general information, or offer support. While we can usually accommodate this, please understand that in order to preserve attorney/client privilege and maintain high ethical standards there will be times when we ask these people to leave the room so we can speak privately with the client.
How Long Before I Receive My Documents?
The length of time it takes to complete your package depends on a number of factors including how quickly you can gather information we need, whether there are outstanding issues that need to be addressed, the complexity of your estate, the types of documents you have asked us to prepare and our outstanding workload. However, most plans are completed in about 3–4 weeks from the point in time we are given all the information we need to start drafting. When the situation warrants it, we do our best to accommodate rush jobs, however there may be an additional fee.
How Much Does This All Cost?
Most of our estate planning services are quoted on a flat-fee basis. Typically the attorney will quote you a fee for the work to be performed after reviewing your situation and developing a plan that meets your needs. We have several packages designed for individuals, couples, families with young children, and persons with more complicated estates. We are also happy to prepare individual documents.
Individual documents such as an updated Power of Attorney or a Simple Will may only cost a few hundred dollars. For a single person a comprehensive plan can be less than $1,000. For a couple with young children the cost for documents that would include both parents and the children is around $1,500. For persons with more complicated estates the cost can range from $2,500 and up depending on the circumstances. Every situation is different and the attorney will be able to quote you a fee at the end of your consultation.
What Payment Options Do You Offer?
Our office accepts checks and all major credit cards. We require a deposit representing 50% of the cost of your estate plan in order to get started with the balance due at the time your documents are signed.
If you would like to discuss payment plans or alternate financing we can do so at the time of the initial consultation.
I Have Another Question.
If you have another question that isn't covered here, you can contact us. Call the office or send us an email and someone will get back to you shortly.