One of the most common misconceptions we encounter here at Carolina Family Estate Planning is the idea that as long as you have written down how you want your assets divided, your estate is safe.
We wish it were that easy, but unfortunately, that could not be further from the truth. North Carolina estate planning is never the same for any two families. Factors like the amount of assets, number of children, anticipated debts, family dynamics, and even the state you live in can all affect how your wishes will be carried out after you are gone.
That is why Attorney Jackie Bedard wants to educate the public on North Carolina asset protection, and encourages readers to enlist the help of an experienced North Carolina estate planning attorney before creating a will or trust on their own.
Regardless of who you hire to help you with your estate plan, make sure that the attorney is capable of the following:
- The firm must be well-versed in all types of asset protection and estate planning. Like we mentioned above – no two families are the same, which is why your attorney should have experience in a wide range of areas, including tax laws, probate laws, will and trust laws, veteran benefits, North Carolina Medicaid and elderly care and the protection of minor children.
- The attorney should provide you with all available options. Be wary of a lawyer who hands you a cookie-cutter will to fill out and sign. Proper estate planning is much more than filling out a bunch of forms.
- Look for an attorney who asks a lot of questions. Putting together a comprehensive estate plan means finding out about family-members personality types, your life goals and what is important to you and the rest of the family, so that they will be protected for the long-term.
- Do they offer free information and resources to help you be an informed consumer? An attorney who regularly provides the community with educational tools like books, workshops and reports shows that he or she cares not only about the field of estate planning, but also about the public as a whole.
- What does your “free consultation” entail? Listening for 15 minutes to a laundry list of options is much different than a full estate plan or benefits evaluation. Attorney Jackie Bedard conducts a detailed evaluation that allows families to walk away with the knowledge of exactly what Carolina Family Estate Planning will do for them, completely tailored to their needs.
For more information on attending a workshop or scheduling a complimentary planning assessment, contact Carolina Family Estate Planning at 919.443.3035 or fill out our online form.