Our goal is to help you design and implement a plan that will protect your family after you are gone. Careful planning will ensure that your wishes are carried out and your family avoids the unnecessary, expensive, and timely probate legal process. We can also show you other opportunities to minimize taxes and protect you and your family from potential creditors (asset protection planning).
Dana and Associates offers a free one-hour meeting with an attorney to assess your estate planning needs.
This first meeting with an attorney is called a Personal Family Legal Session. The purpose of this meeting is for us to get to know you and identify what is important to you, so we can start to develop a personal plan specific to your goals. After we determine what your needs are, we will quote you a flat fee to implement the plan that is right for you. No hourly fees, no hidden costs and no surprise bills!
The Personal Family Legal Session starts prior to your appointment with a Personal Inventory Worksheet that we email to you (or you can download it here). The Personal Inventory Worksheet asks for basic information including:
- Your contact information
- Your family information including marital status and number of children
- Your asset inventory including real estate and retirement accounts (IRAs, 401k)
- Your wishes for the distribution of your assets
- Your wishes for who will receive inheritance
- Your appointees as healthcare and financial decision makers
During your Personal Family Legal Session, your attorney will start by reviewing the Personal Inventory Worksheet and will ask you additional questions about your wishes in the meeting.
If you have an existing estate planning documents, please bring them with you to the appointment (This includes: a trust and/or a last will and testament, health care power of attorney, living will and/or durable financial power of attorney. Your attorney will review your previous plan with you and see if it meets the needs and goals of your family and is up to date with the latest laws.
If you do not have a plan or not, the attorney will next discuss your current goals and objectives. Typically, the goal of estate planning is to pass the assets to children or loved ones while avoiding unnecessary taxes and probate.
Your attorney will present different estate planning solutions specific to your needs. At the end of the meeting, the attorney will explain the cost of your plan and review your payment options. We typically charge a flat rate and also accept we accept some legal benefit plans.
After the Personal Family Legal Session, we will get to work designing your plan.
A few weeks after your initial appointment, you will receive a Drafting Worksheet via email before the signing meeting for you to review your plan. This is an opportunity to make sure that your plan captures your wishes and to confirm the legal names of beneficiaries and agents chosen in your plan. You will also be sent draft copies of the documents for you to review before the signing meeting.
Once your legal documents are signed and finalized it is your responsibility to make sure your assets are moved into the trust. This process is commonly referred to as “funding your trust”. This is as simple as telling your banker or financial advisor how the accounts should be owned, and he or she will get you the documents from the bank or financial institution. Dana and Associates generally handles the transfer of your Arizona Real Estate into your trust.
We offer a complimentary Trust Asset Coordination Session, which is a meeting to go over your attorney’s personal funding recommendations for how your assets should be owned and put into the trust. After you finish changing your banking accounts and updating beneficiary designations your plan is complete and current, and you can have peace of mind, knowing that your loved ones are protected.