Have you decided that you want to meet with an attorney to create an estate plan for the very first time? You'll definitely want to have the following things ready for your initial meeting so that you can answer some questions the attorney will have for you.
List Of Liabilities And Assets
You'll want to bring in a list of all liabilities and assets that you have so that your estate planning attorney will know what they're dealing with. This includes things such as real estate that you own, retirement accounts, investment accounts, and bank accounts, as well as debts and loans that you have.
List Of Family Members And Beneficiaries
Your attorney is going to want to know who will be involved in your estate plan, so it is a good idea to bring a list of family members that you want to include and their relation to you. In addition, you'll want a list of people that are already beneficiaries on existing accounts so that it is factored into your overall estate plan.
Existing Estate Planning Documents
It's possible that you have some estate planning documents already created that you do not typically think of as being related to estate planning. This includes any existing health care directives, documents for power of attorney, or existing trusts that you may already be a part of. This will help prevent your estate planning attorney from creating new documents that may conflict with old ones.
List Of Goals And Concerns
You are visiting an estate planning attorney because you likely have some concerns about what happens if you were to pass away, who your assets go to, or if you become incapacitated. It's important to write down these lists of goals and concerns so that your attorney can focus on them during the estate planning process.
People usually want to minimize the amount of taxes that have to be paid when an estate is inherited or avoid the probate process to speed up heirs receiving their inheritance. You may also be looking into setting up a trust so that money is passed down to others in a responsible way that you have control over.
These are just a few things that you should have before you meet with an estate attorney. Reach out to your chosen estate attorney prior to your meeting so that you know what else to have prepared.