California Estate Planning
An experienced California estate planning attorney is essential in helping to secure a families assets for orderly and efficient distribution when the time comes. The Law Office of Jeffrey A. Mentzos has been in the business for over 20 years in educating Californians to make sure all necessary steps are taken to insure all assets end up in the proper places when the time comes to pass assets to beneficiaries.
The Law Office of Jeffrey A. Mentzos regularly advises Californians regarding the estate planning needs for all families, including helping parents who may be on their second marriage or more. Problems can arise when there are step children involved and so these and other potential problems need to be addressed. Taxes are also an issue, whether it be capital gains tax, estate tax, potential real property tax reassessment and transfer tax, to name a few potential problems. Finally, the amount an estate will save in avoiding probate will serve only to benefit the family.
Your estate plan is not completed when either the Trust or Will is drafted, signed and notarized. Depending on your personal needs which are incorporated into your estate plan will determine what supporting documents are needed for your plan. The documents needed for a complete and effective estate plan include but are not limited to the following:
Hiring an Estate Planning Attorney can be expensive but this really depends upon what a person defines as expensive. Normally, in my experience, I have seen attorneys charge anywhere from $250. Per hour up to $400.00 per hour on average.
In addition with regards to probate, the attorneys’ fees are statutory and will depend on the gross value of the estate that is to be probated.
My costs for setting up an estate plan is a fixed cost. I can make a determination, in most cases, after a free consultation over Zoom with the client. As I have stated before, your estate plan should not, in most cases, cost more than a monthly mortgage payment.
I’m going to be straight up with you all on this one. I am bias. Of course I would like you to hire me to draft your estate plan. With that being said, yes, it is possible for you to draft your own plan. There is a lot of information out there these days in libraries and book stores, HaHa, who am I kidding! Most if not all of you will go to the internet to get information. There is a lot of great information as well as some not so great information, especially in the area of trusts coupled with taxation and tax avoidance.
I am a firm believer in hiring professionals. If I want to build a house, I hire a contractor, if I want to restore my 1969 Chevelle, I will hire a professional. I think you get the idea.
In addition, how much time will it cost you to complete your estate plan?
Finally, there could be severe tax ramifications depending on the estate.