Sometimes It’s Best to NOT Call a Lawyer

I came across a good article in Forbes by guest columnist Wendy Goffe. As an attorney she gives some very good advice about when to call and when not to call a lawyer. I would like to share a few quotes below and would suggest reading the entire article here.

When to Call a Lawyer

You need an estate plan. No estate plan is simple enough to do over the Internet, as much as those late night TV ads would like to convince you otherwise. (See “What Could Happen If You Write Your Own Living Trust?) You have no idea what you don’t know when it comes to drafting enforceable and effective estate planning documents. I have spent too much of my career fixing what people thought were simple estate plans that they did using a form or the Internet. The financial well being of your heirs, especially minor children, is too important to risk simply to save a few dollars. This will be money well spent, even if you won’t be alive to discover that.

Someone dies. There are web sites that purport to be able to walk you through the steps to administer an estate. Again, you have no way of knowing what the web site isn’t telling you. There may be state estate tax returns; trust or estate income tax returns; and various notices to file. Not handling them properly could open you to personal liability. Call an expert.

When Not to Call

When it is “a matter of principle.” Clients often insist that they don’t care about the cost–it is the principle that counts. Unless you have money to burn, the principle will seem much less important when you get the bill.

Your contractor went over budget. I once had a client from a tony neighborhood ask me to sue his contractor for going $10,000 over budget on a very extensive project. I told him, based on hearing countless renovation war stories, that it was a miracle it wasn’t more. I asked if he liked the work. He did. I declined to take his case, but asked for the name of the contractor, which I filed away in case I ever needed to hire one.

You may find the rest of the article well worth your time. When you are ready to put your plan together call us. At Idaho Estate Planning we have the expertise andresources to make sure your plan is carried out according to your wishes.Remember, good planning is no accident! 



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