It is important to understand that estate planning documents do not exist in a vacuum. Estate planning is one of the most technical and dynamic areas of the law. Properly planning an estate requires consideration of federal and state tax issues, state property law, state probate law and state trust law. Estate planning documents must be carefully customized to meet each individual’s unique circumstances and objectives. If they are not, unintended, and often costly, consequences may result.
Suppose you use a generic template that you find online to create a last will and testament or revocable living trust. Are you sure that the documents that you wind up with will stand up to any challenges that may present themselves after your death? Are you sure the tax sensitive provisions of your documents have been properly considered for your particular circumstances? Could there be conflicting clauses that require your family to go to court to interpret the document after you have passed? Has the document been thoughtfully drafted under state law so that your beneficiaries’ inheritances are protected from a divorcing spouse or other potential creditors?
Another thing to consider is best explained by way of example. Let's say that you never played golf before. You look into the bag and you see a lot of clubs, but you really don't know what club you should use. You may not use the right clubs as you try to negotiate the course without any information. The same is true of estate planning. There are numerous different legal instruments that can be utilized. Just arbitrarily deciding which ones you are going to use in a DIY last will and testament or revocable living trust is simply reckless.
These are a few things to think about, but if you would like to learn more of the facts we urge you to download our free report on DIY estate planning. This special report goes into a good bit of detail about the dangers of do-it-yourself wills and living trusts.
We urge you to download your copy of the report. Access will be granted if you follow the simple instructions that you see after clicking this link: The Dangers of DIY Wills & Living Trusts.