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What Does a Wills and Probate Lawyer Do?

A will attorney can create your will, a document that declares how your possessions will be divided after death. A probate attorney will then help the family through the process of carrying out these wishes. Often the same lawyer can handle wills and probate, but check with your lawyer to see if he or she also does both.

How Do I Know If I Need a Wills and Probate Lawyer?

Creating a will is a good idea at any age because we never know what's going to happen. No matter your age or health, a will ensures that your savings and assets will be distributed in the way you want. If you write your will on your own and if it's not legally sound, you may not be able to fix it when it's necessary. That's why it's a smart idea to consult with a will attorney to draft or revise your will.

A probate lawyer can make sure that everything you include in your will is carried out since you won't be able to do this yourself. If your will attorney doesn't double as a probate lawyer, you should enlist the help of a probate lawyer to make sure your interests are looked after.

If you expect to have a large estate over $5,120,000, contact an attorney to discuss alternative estate planning techniques. Filing an estate tax is required for estates over $5,120,000 in 2012.

How Much Does a Wills and Probate Lawyer Cost?

Billing methods vary, but will attorneys often charge flat rate fees for creating or revising a will, since most wills take about the same amount of time. To handle probate, lawyers generally charge an hourly rate or take a percentage of the estate they're handling. Probate can be a long and expensive process. Rates will vary based on the complexity of your case and where you live, so be sure to establish the rate up front with your attorney.

What Should I Expect When Working with a Wills and Probate Lawyer?

After creating a will, having it approved by a will attorney, and appointing a probate lawyer, you can expect that your wishes will be carried out as intended.

This article contains general legal information and does not contain legal advice. Rocket Lawyer is not a law firm or a substitute for an attorney or law firm. The law is complex and changes often. For legal advice, please ask a lawyer.

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