What should I bring to my initial estate planning meeting?

First of all, pat yourself on the back. You have made the right decision to create or update your estate plan.Even the best-intentioned individuals fail to make it this far. Now, you might be wondering what documents to gather for your initial meeting with a Norman Dowler, LLP attorney.This article intends to answer this query, so that you are well-prepared for your consultation.

1. Bring any estate planning documents that you might have. These include trusts, wills, and financial and/or medical powers of attorney.

2. Bring copies of any real estate deeds that you have. If you cannot find them, we will be happy to assist in retrieving a copy.

3. Bring brokerage and bank account statements with account numbers. These include beneficiary designations such as for IRA's, 401(k)'s, annuities, and life insurance.

4. Bring business information, such as stock certificates for a corporation, operating agreements for LLC's and partnership agreements.

5. Bring an inventory of art, collectibles, or any other personal property that you wish to bequeath.

6. Bring safety deposit box information that includes the location of any safety deposit box.

7. Bring a copy of your most recent tax return.

8. Bring an inventory of items and indicate whether they are owned jointly or separately, by either husband or wife.

9. Bring a list of any liabilities that you may have.

10. Bring children's information (i.e. birthdates, whether they are from prior marriages or not; addresses) and bring information on any other desired beneficiaries..

11. Bring a list, including the addresses and most recent contact information for your desired Representative, Trustees, Executors, and Power of Attorney holder that you wish to appoint.

12. Bring a list of who you want to make a medical decision if you are unable to do so.With some, or all of these in hand, you are well on your way to a productive meeting with one of our estate planning attorneys and to a sound estate plan.

By Brian C. Israel, Norman Dowler, LLP.

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