A last will and testament are vital to protecting your assets and ensuring your loved ones receive them. While most Americans agree that creating a will is essential, unfortunately, many Americans fail to do so, including needing the proper estate planning documents. Furthermore, many Americans need to update their wills. Having a probate attorney helps you avoid potential issues following your passing away. We’ll look for five crucial factors to consider when naming a probate attorney.
It’s best to name an attorney that already has plenty of experience under their belt. More specifically, you want to hire an attorney with years of experience in estate planning and probate law. While a fresh face may do a professional job, you learn a lot as the years go by.
Estate planning and probate cases often carry some amount of mourning. Therefore, you want to work with an attorney who is empathetic to your needs and mental condition. Besides dealing with the loss of a loved one, the probate process can also be stressful due to its legal requirements—especially if you’ve been named executor.
Of course, recently losing a loved one also means it can be difficult for families always to see things objectively. As a result, emotions and tensions can run high, and arguments can break out, even for a family that usually doesn’t argue. These arguments can even turn into contention with family members threatening litigation. An attorney can help you and your family see things objectively—even if it means dealing with uncomfortable truths. Again, a professional attorney will be emphatic during this process, but they also won’t be afraid to be objective and tell you what you may not want to hear.
Being able to communicate effectively comes in handy in many ways. First, of course, you want an attorney that can effectively communicate with the courts, executor, other family members, and creditors. But, of course, you also want an attorney that you can easily talk to. Like many professions, the law can have a lot of jargon and confusing language for someone unfamiliar with the law. An attorney shouldn’t try to impress you with hard-to-understand terminology or concepts. Instead, they should be able to take any confusing concepts or terms, break them down in a way you can understand, and answer any questions you have.
Settling an estate and completing the probate process isn’t a walk in the park. Even smaller estates with clearly laid out wills can encounter their fair share of difficulties. A professional attorney, however, will be able to stick through the process no matter how messy it gets and will always be available to take your call. But, of course, alongside perseverance comes the confidence that the probate lawyer can resolve the case—something our friends at the Theus Law Offices agree with.