After you begin to get organized, it is time to start looking for an attorney. If you are interested in seeing how to get organized, click here! You do not have to wait until all your documents are organized to contact an attorney. They will want to go through and see many of the things that you are compiling. The attorney can provide advice in the process as well as the motivation to complete it!
So how does one find an attorney? When you are looking for an attorney, consider their expertise, experience, cost, and convenience of location. In addition, and this is very important, you will be working with this attorney on very personal matters so you should trust them and feel that you can speak openly with them. With that in mind, it is best to meet with any prospective attorneys before you commit so you can gauge their manner.
There are many ways to find a lawyer that specializes in special needs estate planning. A quick search online will likely produce an overwhelming amount of results to sift through. Alternatively, you can look to your local bar association for a referral. Each city or county has a bar association that can be a great resource when looking for specific attorneys in your area. Oftentimes, the best way to find an attorney is to ask other parents for recommendations.
Consider asking the following questions of a prospective attorney.
- How long have you been practicing with special needs situations?
- Have you prepared special needs documents before?
- Why did you enter this practice of law?
- What kind of clients do you typically work with?
- Can you describe your manner with your clients?
Prepare for the attorney to ask you general questions about your child, your hopes for your child, and your finances so that they can better understand your family and your circumstance. Your finances will not preclude you from being able to draft a special needs trust; anyone with a special needs’ child can have one. It is helpful for the attorney to have some color around your particular situation to see if they are a good fit for your needs.
To read my first article on Estate Planning – Where to Start with Special Needs Estate Planning, click here!