Many people assume that a will or any type of documents, including a medical or financial power of attorney, is a relatively simple legal document that can be a do-it-yourself project.
There are even online companies and services that offer to complete wills, trusts, annuities and other types of documents to allow for estate planning without having to see an attorney. However, the only way to know that the documents are being produced correctly and will be legally admissible in a court is to use an estate planning lawyer.
For large or small estates in Duval, FL, consulting with a specialized estate planning lawyer is more than just providing peace of mind. It allows the individual to consider options and choices that can have a very large impact on the challenges heirs may have in probating the will.
Issues to Consider
In Florida, as in many other states, there are very specific rules about what can and cannot be included in a will. This can even extend to who can be named as a personal representative in a will.
There will also be state-specific issues to consider. In Duval, FL, incorrectly filled out or improperly signed or witnessed wills are not considered legally valid, which can result in the court determining how the estate is handled regardless of your wishes.
As a general rule, the more complex your estate will be the more important it is to have an estate planning lawyer complete the documents. Issues that will make an estate more complex include: multiple marriages and divorces with children, family-owned businesses, multiple properties or investments, a substantial amount in the estate as well as issues with minor children, or children that will have long-term care needs.
Meeting with an estate planning attorney can help you to understand the importance of seeking the correct legal advice and support in developing a will that is clear, precise and legally correct.
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