Getting your Trust documents together, and feeling “overwhelmed,” go hand in hand. It is the same for Last Wills and the other healthcare documents. Almost everyone knows it is important to have a Will or Trust, but many don’t take the next step. And we wondered why. So, we did our own informal survey and discovered that the people we knew were largely overwhelmed and fearful of the anticipated process.
It is overwhelming…and emotional, uneasy, and not always clear. There is a whole lot of uncertainty and confusion, disagreements and more that can be wrapped into it. But, it is necessary, nearly mandatory, planning for yourself and your kids. So, let’s break it down into three easy, manageable stages (Ducks, 1, 2 and 3) and leave this planning in the rearview mirror.
- Gather your “stuff.” Take a monthly statement from every IRA, 401k, bank account, savings account, life insurance, etc. and throw it in a folder. This will help you list out your accounts for the attorney drafting your papers. The types of your accounts helps to design your plan.
- Give basic facts. Fact-gathering includes simple tasks such as listing names, children’s names, and important people. But also take this time to think about what is important to you. My online Intake Form is a downloadable fillable PDF. Save it to your own computer, fill it out as best as you can (take 30 minutes), and send it back. It does not need to be 100% complete. Download and upload the Intake Forms here.
- Let’s create the design. We choose either Wills, Trusts or a combo of different instruments based on your desires and your Intake Form responses. We listen to you to create and customize your documents. You may choose our bundled packages or purchase documents a la carte. Our meeting will fit your schedule and preferred mode of communication. Telephone or video conference, or even via email exchanges.
- Sign your documents. There are a lot of them in the final product. They will be arranged in a neat portfolio for your safe-keeping. Make the documents official through a fun, signing celebration. We will have more options as things develop–virtually, outdoors, and possibly, once again, in an office setting. (As I’m writing this, Tampa is just beginning to “reopen” after COVID-19). You may also use a mobile notary that will come to your house.
- Follow-up. Align beneficiaries with your plan by finally getting your various accounts in order. We inform you of the language to use and the final steps to take. Learn more here about the types of accounts that need attention.
- Save and Delegate. Follow our guides in saving your important papers. We will provide an Estate Planning Checklist to make it easier for you to organize, and others to assist with your financial affairs.
That’s it! Your three ducks are in a row. Those are the three stages of estate planning.
Ready for Stage One? Head over to download the Intake Form. If you have a question, or want to chat first, just reach out.
Based out of Tampa, Florida, Lori is mom to a fantastic 5-year-old boy. They love to go on local adventures, travel and play with matchbox cars for seemingly endless hours. Lori enjoys reading classic novels, organic gardening, and studying languages with her son. She considers herself well-versed in Seinfeld and welcomes any trivia!
Disclaimer: The Law Office of Lori Vella’s website contains general information directed to Florida residents. This firm does not intend to give legal advice through its pages and/or blog. If you need legal advice, we encourage you to find an attorney licensed in your state. This language on this website does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and this firm.
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