When it comes to estate planning, it can be confusing to know where to begin. Despite the many benefits of working with an estate planning attorney, people taking the first steps to plan for the future can be hesitant to discuss their assets and personal details with a professional. The best NJ estate planning attorneys provide in-depth knowledge of all the tools you will need to secure your future, but it can be hard to know where to start looking for the qualified professional that fits your specific needs. Here is how you can make sure you’re getting the best legal advice for your personalized estate plan.
- Talk to friends and family.
One of the best sources for finding a quality estate planning attorney is to ask friends and family who they have used in the past. If you know someone who has recently created an estate plan, ask them if they worked with an estate planning attorney. Getting a recommendation from a trusted friend will typically mean more than any online review. The people close to you will also be able to tell you about their experiences so you know what to expect.
- Don’t be afraid to look outside your area.
While you certainly want to work with a lawyer that is licensed to practice in your state, don’t just settle for the attorney that is the closest to you. It is better to find an attorney that fits your needs first and look at geography second. Many attorneys will be willing to work with you if travel is difficult for you, or may have a satellite office in your area. The right attorney will make the effort to meet your needs.
- Consult with other professionals.
If you work with an accountant, a financial advisor, or another kind of attorney, ask if they could suggest any estate planning attorneys. These professionals tend to work together for clients and therefore know the best of the best in each specialty area. It’s even possible these trusted professionals worked personally with an attorney on their own estate plan. They will have insight into a potential estate planning attorney’s work ethic, business practices, and expertise.
- Watch out for internet directories.
While google searches have become the internet’s version of the yellow pages, be wary of relying too much on internet directories. Most of these directories are compiled of attorneys and law offices that have paid a large fee for a good review as a “specialist.” Only trust lists that are verified by a third party. These directories are not paid to list an attorney and they use specific criteria to rank qualified professionals. One great website to search for lawyers is the verification site www.avvo.com
- Bar Association referrals.
State and local Bar Associations offer lawyer referral services to the public. The NJ Bar Association sorts their referral lists by specialty so you can look specifically for an estate planning attorney. Keep in mind that the Bar Association is not assessing attorneys based on the quality of their work and that attorneys pay a fee to be featured in these lists. Just because an attorney is listed on this website, it doesn’t mean they will be a good match for your legal needs. However, if you are struggling to find an attorney, this may be a good jumping off point.
- Look for signs of accountability.
A good estate planning attorney will have a malpractice insurance policy. Even the best attorneys make mistakes. An attorney that acknowledges this fact and has taken the necessary precautions shows trustworthy judgment and professionalism. You can also see if the attorney is part of any professional organizations. This can indicate that they are interested in keeping up with the latest estate planning developments. Taking the time to be involved in these organizations means an attorney is constantly sharpening their knowledge and networking with other professionals. Keeping up to date on recent laws and planning techniques will benefit you and your family.
At Veitengruber Law
, our legal team is experienced in providing estate planning and asset protection services that are customized to fit your specific needs and future goals. We know how intimidating it can be to consult with an attorney. We will take the time to sit down with you to discuss your concerns and make sure you understand all of your legal options. We want you to be able to make informed decisions about your future. Call us today at 732-852-7295 for your free, no-obligation consultation. We work with clients throughout New Jersey and can discuss your options over the phone if travel is difficult. We also have a satellite office in Bordentown, NJ.
Don’t wait to make a plan to secure your future. Talk to an experienced estate planning attorney