At Sandin Law, we believe in a comprehensive estate plan for every client. We assist our estate planning clients not only with the drafting of their testamentary documents and incapacity planning documents, but we go beyond to make sure our clients' assets are titled property and/or beneficiary designations are completed so that their goals are accomplished and their assets pass in sync with their testamentary wishes.
Before your first meeting, we will ask you to complete our estate planning worksheet and provide it to our office prior to your initial meeting. This worksheet will help our attorneys get an idea of your assets and goals beforehand, so that the conversation can specifically focus on you and your matters, instead of a general discussion. The time can be used more efficiently, and in almost all cases, they will recommend the best estate plan to suit you and your family's needs.
Based on your situation, we will provide estate planning services on a flat fee. Our flat fee estate planning process is laid out in a set of meetings - an initial meeting, a design meeting and an execution/signing meeting. However, whether we are able to provide your estate plan on a flat fee basis or an hourly rate basis, below are the meetings you can expect if you are an estate planning client of Sandin Law.
Step 1: Initial Meeting
The initial estate planning meeting typically lasts 1 - 1.5 hours, and if you are a couple working on your estate plan, we do ask that both clients attend all meetings. The attorneys at Sandin Law will thoroughly review the estate planning worksheet before your first meeting and discuss the details with you in person. Based on their review and your discussion, they will provide you with their recommendation(s) for your custom estate plan. At this time, they will also discuss fees with you and let you know if your plan could be provided on a flat fee, and if so, we will discuss the next steps in the process. If your recommended estate plan does not fall within our flat fee modeling, the attorneys at Sandin Law will discuss the projected fee for the work to be completed. If you decide to move forward with Sandin Law in completing your estate plan, we will provide you with an engagement letter to be signed that will outline our fees and services.
Step 2: Design Meeting
At this meeting, we will have all of your estate planning documents drafted, and the attorneys at Sandin Law will review the documents with you. During this discussion, we will make certain decision in the "design" of your estate plan, discuss the details of your decisions, and make sure you understand them. We will also obtain any additional information from you that we may need to finalize your plan. The design meeting typically lasts 1-2 hours, and if your estate plan was quoted on a flat fee, there will only be one design meeting. If your estate plan was quoted on an hourly fee basis, it was likely because your estate plan cannot be replicated in our flat fee modeling, and therefore, depending upon what we are customizing for your estate plan, there may be more design meetings to discuss the details of your plan.
Step 3: Execution Meeting
This is the final meeting in the creation of your estate plan where the attorneys at Sandin Law will review the final drafts of your estate planning documents that are prepared for your signature. We will discuss the final "design" decisions that you made in your prior meeting, review the plan in its totality, and sign your newly created estate planning documents. We will have an estate planning portfolio prepared for your convenience to manage the storage of your estate planning documents, and you will take all originals for safekeeping. Depending upon the changes made between the design meeting and the execution meeting, this meeting will last anywhere between 1 to 2 hours. Final payment for all flat fee estate plans is due at your final meeting.