An Estate Plan is one part stuff, and the other part strategy.
The stuff is your home, your cottage up north, your baseball card collection, and other personal assets. These represent the Estate portion of an Estate Plan—but there’s more! People tend to get wrapped up in the word “Estate.” How do I get my stuff from Point A to Point B? That’s their major concern. What they’re not thinking about is the second word in the phrase: “Plan.” You need a strategy.
Family members and the courts will generally figure out where the stuff goes, but what they don’t know is this: What’s the journey going to be like? Who are the people deciding the itinerary and setting the route?
You need a guidebook for the journey. That’s what your “Plan” is all about.
Do you play basketball? Even if you don’t, you’ll understand this scenario. When you’re getting ready for a game, you generally know your own strengths and weaknesses–and those of your opponent. Let’s say you twist your ankle in the middle of the game, but you decide to keep playing. Will you stick to the game plan? No. The facts on the court have changed, so your plan has to change.
Let’s apply this scenario to an Estate Plan. Your “stuff” may or may not change. It probably won’t. Your “strategy” will change, because life will change. You may become estranged from a relative. A close friend might die. The kids will grow up. You might get divorced.
Life changes, so the Plan needs to change. This is a “Plan” business, not just an “Estate” business.
Lawyers often limit themselves by thinking only about the Estate. They focus on saving taxes and avoiding probate. But this is an Estate Plan, and plans change because plans rely on people.
What’s the best way to deal with the “Plan” part? Shanley Law LLC has a well-developed process, and we educate our clients about this process. That’s why Estate Planning is offered at a flat rate, so we have ample time for teaching and learning.
You take an active part in the planning because the Plan relies on you.
You need to know it. You need to train your people to know what’s expected of them. If you wait until you’re in a coma to start the conversation, you’re in trouble. Shanley Law LLC is the Green Bay law firm that can help you focus on both the “stuff” and the “strategy” of an Estate Plan. Contact us today for a free consultation.
About Us: Attorney Devin Shanley is the approachable expert clients can trust. A native of Green Bay, Wisconsin, Devin has been developing legal solutions in his beloved hometown since 2012. Married to Mo and dad to two rambunctious kids, he has a soft spot for the Green Bay Packers, grilling out, and playing with his kids. His areas of practice are Estate Planning, Family Law, Business Law, and Non-Profit Organization Law. Schedule your free consultation by calling 920-471-4337.