Are You Ready
To Begin Your Estate Plan?
Estate planning ensures financial security for your loved ones if something should happen to you by protecting your hard-earned assets – such as your home, investments, retirement accounts and life insurance. An estate plan is a necessary tool that allows you to protect, maintain and manage your property if you become ill or pass away. But more than that, it can also help people make sure their minor children are protected in the event of an emergency or minimize taxes paid on assets by beneficiaries.Complete Our Readiness Quiz
1. Step One
Complete form questions
The form below includes questions that relate to you and each member of your immediate family. We request information about your marital and veteran status, health conditions, number of offspring, and whether any of them are disabled. There are also questions about relevant financial matters, including your income, businesses, savings, investments, real estate holdings, retirement plans, life insurance policies, debts, and monies owed to you or that you expect to inherit. It also addresses any previous steps you have taken towards creating an estate plan with another attorney and/or any signed documents you have in your possession.Complete Our Intake Form
2. Step Two
Keeping your loved ones in mind
It is important to remember that if you don’t have a will and don’t take the necessary steps to plan your estate, the consequences can be disastrous. For example, not naming a guardian for your children leaves this crucial decision up to the discretion of the court; not putting your assets in trusts may allow the money you worked so hard to accumulate to be consumed by taxes or even by a single personal injury lawsuit. Our experienced legal team will do everything possible to make sure that you and your family are secure.Learn More About Our Estate Planning Process
3. Step Three
We evaluate your goals for the future
By the time you have completed this consultation worksheet, we will all have a condensed version of your assets and liabilities. In addition, we will be aware of your goals for the future. All of this information will be invaluable as we begin to prepare the necessary documents and make our 90-minute meeting with you all the more productive. Of course, nothing can substitute for the personal conversation we look forward to having with you.Take Our Priorities Quiz
Which Path Is Right For Me?
With proper planning, probate can even be avoided so that your beneficiaries receive your assets in a way that’s controlled by you and not by attorneys, the government or the IRS. We are committed to preparing a plan to help you contend with the unforeseeable events that may interfere with your intentions –a medical diagnosis, a serious accident or other incapacitating event. And, because all of us have to prepare for death, we will ensure that your estate plan will preserve your legacy and facilitate the distribution of your assets to those you love most.
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Using the will-based approach, which is the least costly, we will provide you with a Last Will and Testament to name your beneficiaries and a guardian for your minor children if it becomes necessary. We will also make sure you have signed copies of the following specially prepared documents: Durable Power of Attorney, HIPAA Release, Health Care Proxy, and Living Will/Personal Directive in case you become incapacitated.
One drawback to the will-based approach, especially for individuals with sizable assets, is that it does not avoid the probate process which can be very expensive and time-consuming. Therefore, many of our clients chose a trust-based approach to estate planning.
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Though having us prepare this kind of plan costs more upfront, it may have a number of benefits. These include: avoiding probate, circumventing a large amount of taxation, keeping your financial affairs private (since wills are public documents), and protecting your children’s assets in case of divorce, bankruptcy, or lawsuits.
Specially designed trusts may also be established to, among other things: assist special needs children, enhance charitable bequests, arrange for pet care after you die, and provide funds for long-term elder care.
Service and Pricing Guide
At Surprenant & Beneski, we are well aware that you want your estate planning services, like all the other services you receive, to be cost-effective. To that end, we have created a service and pricing guide for you to clarify your options. Our informative pages explain the difference between will-based and trust-based estate plans and the pros and cons of each.
Please note that your planning needs may not fit “neatly” into any one of the categories outlined in our Services & Pricing Guide. You may not need everything in one plan, or may find that a combination of plans is the best fit. The guide will give you a general sense of the price ranges for different types of planning.View Our Guide
Why You Need Us
Surprenant & Beneski is grateful for the opportunity to earn your trust and wants to make your experience with us as transparent and understandable as possible. Since we are professional estate planning attorneys and have been through this process many times before, we want you to have the reassurance that we will ask all the right questions and help you decide which solutions are best for you and your family.
Get Started with Your Estate Plan Today
Thank you for choosing us and allowing us to help you along the estate planning process. Our experienced Southeastern Massachusetts estate planning attorneys are well-prepared to sit down and discuss which options are best for you and your family.
To understand our estate planning process and what you can do to prepare, view our guide here for more information. View our glossary here to get a full understanding of important estate planning terms and concepts.