Do I need a lawyer for estate administration?

While many people immediately think of lawyers for handling criminal cases or litigation such as in divorces or contentious custody battles, they may not consider the need for an attorney in a situation such as estate administration. Often, individuals do not think about planning for the proper distribution of their assets or the management of their estate, and this can leave their loved ones in difficult circumstances amidst the trying time of dealing with a death. 

If you properly manage your wealth with estate planning, it can take the burden off of your loved ones when it comes time to designate how to distribute your assets following your death. However, this is not something you should face on your own. You should not squander the time and effort you have dedicated to building your wealth with haphazard or inappropriate planning. Here are a few things to consider when you are deciding whether you need a lawyer for your estate administration.

Complex circumstances

There are several examples of life circumstances that can make it complex to divide assets and determine how to manage your wealth after your death. Although typically people think about disputes among family members in terms of asset distribution, it is also important for those without children to engage in estate planning. Otherwise, their hard-earned assets could end up in the hands of the state in a probate court. Estate planning can be valuable if any of the following circumstances apply to you:

  • You own property in multiple states
  • You have children under the age of 18
  • You have been divorced and remarried
  • You own one or more businesses

These are just a few of the many situations where a qualified estate planning attorney can help you understand the options available to you in terms of managing these circumstances according to your wishes following your death, in accordance with the laws of your state.

Things you have not thought of

Estate planning requires facing the facts of your own mortality, which is quite uncomfortable for many. Despite this, there are vital questions that should be faced ahead of time in order to avoid problems later on. Qualified estate planning can help you ask the questions you did not even know you needed to ask. Although these questions can be difficult to face up to, answering them can make a huge difference for your loved ones. 

Making sure everything is legal

While it may seem obvious, working with a lawyer to draft a will or implement a trust can help you ensure that your wishes are executable under the law. Nowadays there are a wide range of “do-it-yourself” type documents online that may seem tempting to use in order to save money or time. A lawyer can help you understand the legal ramifications of your choices and can help you by drafting documents that adhere to state laws and requirements.

Estate planning is often dismissed as something just for “rich people,” but truly anyone can benefit from the qualified expertise of an attorney who knows how to help individuals distribute their assets following their death. This can be an area where a qualified legal professional may be able to alleviate your anxiety and help you find peace of mind in facing a challenging and complex situation.