11th Apr 2018
Is there a reason why I should use an Attorney to set up a Family Trust?
The Answer is very straightforward: FOR EXPERT LEGAL ADVICE.
Blank trust forms are available easily. All you need do, is to fill in the blank spaces on the form. In addition, others, such as financial planners, and regular (non-legal) people have pitched trusts to the elderly for a long time now. They sell these as legal documents, yet the individual still needs to have it signed by a legal entity. In recent years, LegalZoom and other websites offer to set up trusts for people, and charge them a fee upfront.
LegalZoom uses online technology to do the same as the blank forms one can purchase from the stationery store.
People are unaware of the fact that a family trust is a discretionary legal document that outlines certain legal and ethical conducts. Ther are certain legal rules that must be adhered to. Within the family trust category there are also varied trusts and different ways in which trusts can be assembled, including all its legitimate components. Each trust is unique in the way it is set up, as it answers to each individuals situation – that is it is to the benefit of each individual client.
If a trust is seen as a commodity, people will search for the least expensive solution or how much they can save at any given time. Instead, the client should be searching for an attorney who would fulfill the LEGAL needs for the trust. The attorney should be entrusted with all of the situations and financial aspects of the client’s life. This legal document will fulfill the setting up of the trust to meet all the needs, objectives, and requirements of the client.
The family trust I design for individuals is built on a relationship between the client and I. By doing this, the client will entrust the me with all the information needed to draft all the aspects of the family trust.
One part of this relationship is the invaluable ADVICE that the attorney is able to give.
LegalZoom, and others, do not offer such a service. Even though LegalZoom is not as expensive, there are extra costs that the client should consider. Hidden for example include that the client still needs to take the forms to a legal authority to sign the documents.
Another example of the added cost for a married couple is as follows: There are five documents that might need signatures. Each signature could cost as high as $15 dollars each (that is, in California). With the legal route, one could still negotiate the signature fee, and it might be lowered. This is when you do the drafting through an attorney.
Thus, with a trust through LegalZoom you might pay more than the advertised cost. The client could wind up saving as little as between $200 and $300 over an attorney driven trust. It is important to understand that for such a small savings, you might as well approach an attorney to provide you with a legal option, that will also give you some peace of mind.
As an attorney I spend two to four hours interviewing my clients in order to know, and fully understand the needs of individual clients. The parameters of their needs and requirements are established in this first meeting – the consultation meeting. This is also when I come alongside the client and offer up advice on what their options are. During the course of the process, I am just a phone call away for any questions, clarity, or changes from the client. For this consultation, there are no additional costs. These in between consultation usually happen before the client signs the documents.
Once the client signs the documents, they can once again call me if they have any concerns, or queries regarding the final documents. Again, I do not charge for these consultation calls.
Furthermore, the relationship with my client continues, and I am always available for any future changes. This will allow the trust to remain updated. It is also advisable to update the trust to accommodate your current financial climate
Even though I insist that I do not charge my clients for telephone consultations, there has to be a point where the amount of work I do , would require me to charge the client. This often happens if they need assistance outside of the trust consultations. For example, if they need assistance with drafting a testament, or any other legal advice. However, there are no hidden costs in drafting the family trust for my clients.
Should you pay an additional cost of $200 or $300, these expenses are the fees you would pay to the attorney for any additional services in terms of advice, their time, as well as any solutions they would provide you with. This will not be the case with the other services you might use – LegalZoom and other websites. As said before, there are the extra expenses that their advertisement does not disclose.
If you are ready to set up your family trust, please contact me for a plan that would suit your personal objectives, and your needs for the future. I am experienced in setting up family trusts, and you would be in good hands. As said already, I provide each individual client a personally designed family trust. My experience covers a wide range of clients, and it be an honor to work with you.
My practice sevices Orange, Los Angeles, Riverside, and San Bernardino Counties. I provide you with a personal interview, and build a relationship of trust that will benefit you, and your family.