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How Much Does a Simple Estate Plan Cost?

Ever since the United States economy tanked in 2008, along with the downturn in the Florida real estate market, I’ve observed that a lot of people became frozen by the fear of not having enough money and delayed seeking elder law advice to resolve important legal issues.

Many families found themselves in a legal crisis. Why? Because they didn’t want to invest in their future and seek qualified legal advice at the earliest possible time. What I refer to as the ‘fear of lack’ instead of abundance (the glass is half full), has caused people to take shortcuts to resolve their legal issues – these shortcuts often result in more problems and expense to fix. Unfortunately, the delays I witnessed resulted in people incurring more legal fees to fix the problem, losing the privacy in their lives (due to guardianship) and having fewer planning options.

A common situation is people creating their own legal documents on the internet through Legal Zoom or other service. In many situations those documents were not properly signed (so they are not valid) or, didn’t fully address their legal needs. Sadly, this is a perfect example of being ‘penny wise and pound foolish.’

Since 2008 my office receives calls from people asking “how much does it cost for a simple estate plan?” or, “how much will it cost to protect my assets and qualify for Medicaid?” Unless the caller receives a range of legal fees, the caller won’t schedule a consultation. My staff and I cannot diagnose your issues in a few minutes on the telephone in order to tell you the cost of our legal services–as qualified and experienced as I am. Just like a doctor cannot diagnose and treat a patient’s medical issue over the telephone. We do not want to scare anyone away by quoting a range of fees that may not apply to your particular situation. We want to motivate you to be an informed consumer. At our firm we:

  • tailor our advice and recommendations to your circumstances and needs while treating you with compassion
  • educate you about the law, your rights and planning options
  • empower you to make an informed decision to achieve your goals that helps create peace of mind.

To do this effectively, I need to meet with you to:

  1. discuss what is happening or changing in your and your spouse or partner’s lives;
  2. identify your concerns and goals;
  3. review your finances (type of assets and income, value and ownership); and
  4. determine which legal planning options will best help you achieve your goals based on your circumstances.

There is no ‘one size fits all’ solution to creating an estate or asset protection plan. Each person is unique and deserves to receive a comprehensive analysis with recommendations tailored to them. That is why when you visit my firm’s website (www.fl-elderlaw.com ) you can download a gift certificate for a 20% discount for the initial consultation. The consultation will be an investment in your future. At the end of the consultation you will not only leave informed about your planning options you will also receive a written proposal for legal services.

As a well known businessman suggested: Be an educated consumer. Don’t make decisions that impact your future and your family based on fear.

We are pleased to work with our clients at our office, via telephone where appropriate, and we make house-calls. Our goal is to counsel people of all ages to co-create a plan that achieves your goals.

Law Office of Stephanie L. Schneider, P.A.