How to Choose an Estate Planning Attorney
This is often stated in different ways, such as
- How to find a lawyer for a will
- How to find a lawyer for wills and estates
- How to find an estate attorney
- How to select an estate planning attorney
Here are some tips:
- Find an attorney that practices in estate planning. They keep up with all of the changes in the laws that can affect your estate plan.
- Preferably, find one that is versed in elder law and Medicaid as well. There are certain things done in an estate plan that may affect your eligibility for Medicaid if you should ever need it.
- Find somebody you are comfortable with. Shop around for an attorney if you need to. But, be honest with the attorney and tell him you are shopping up front.
- Find somebody whose fee you are comfortable with. Fees may vary somewhat within the local attorney community. But you can expect to pay slightly higher fees to a lawyer that practices in the area or who also adds in elder law to their portfolio.
- All attorneys are expected to have a minimum level of competence. But, when I took the Bar exam, estate planning was not a tested subject. The related subject of Real Estate (Real Property) Law was tested, but not elder law or estate planning law.
Choosing an attorney is based on a trust relationship. If you don’t feel that you can trust an attorney, then feel free to find another one. Everything that is done is based on that level of trust and confidence in the lawyer and the lawyer’s abilities.