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7 Tips for finding the right estate planning attorney

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7 Tips For Finding the Right New Hampshire Estate Planning Attorney

The search for an attorney who can assist you in preparing a superb estate plan often seems like an impossible task. However, with a little assistance, you can find the right New Hampshire estate planning lawyer. Here are a few tips to assist you in starting your search:

1.      Ask family members, close friends, or business associates for referrals.

The highest praise an NH estate planning lawyer can receive is an enthusiastic referral from a current or former client. Business associates, friends, and family members are ideal individuals to ask for a referral. Even if the attorney they recommend is not located in your immediate community, modern technology can enable you to work closely with a lawyer and still achieve the same satisfactory results as the individual who recommended them to you.

2.      Request a referral from your financial advisor.

Many financial advisors serve as ideal sources for recommendations. The majority of NH financial advisors see estate planning as a critical component of achieving their clients’ overall goals, and consequently, most advisors have one or two trusted estate planning attorneys with whom they have worked closely in the past. If your financial advisor has not broached the subject of estate planning with you before, raise the topic yourself. Moreover, ask your financial advisor who prepared their own personal estate plan. Their answer could provide the results you are looking for.

3.      Accountants can also provide referrals.

A good number of New Hampshire’s estate planning attorneys employ the services of accountants for assistance with income, trust, and estate taxes. Therefore, your accountant can more than likely recommend several lawyers in your community who can assist with putting together an estate plan. In a similar fashion, many accountants search for estate planning attorneys on behalf of their clients because accountants have intimate knowledge of their clients’ familial situations and financial information – all of which necessitate then need for the creation of an estate plan. As with your financial advisor, do not be afraid to ask your accountant who prepared their personal estate plan.

4.      Consult with other lawyers you have worked with in the past for referrals.

Whether it was for reviewing a contract, purchasing a home, or establishing a business, the chances are that you have worked with an attorney before. This lawyer may be familiar with knowledgeable estate planning lawyers in your immediate area. Attorneys are almost always happy to refer a client to another attorney who practices outside their area of expertise because this generally results in referrals coming from the other way. Ask the lawyers you have previously worked with who prepared their own estate plans. There is a saying that a lawyer who attempts to represent himself in legal matters has a fool for a client, and this rings especially true in the arena of estate planning. Therefore, it is highly likely that attorneys you have worked with in the past have had an estate planning lawyer do their work for them.

5.      Contact your local bar association or the New Hampshire state bar for recommendations.

Each state, including New Hampshire, has their own bar association. Some cities and communities also have their own bar associations. The majority of these associations keep an updated list of their members and what areas of law they practice. Some bar associations offer to the general public certified referral services. To find a certified referral service in your area, go online or look in your community’s telephone directory.

6.      Research advertisements found in your local newspaper or telephone directory.

Alternately, advertisements for NH estate planning attorneys can also be found on television, the radio, and the Internet.  A wise estate planning lawyer will advertise to potential clients through a variety of different mediums, which include print, the media, and the Internet. Each state in the U.S. regulates the manner in which lawyers advertise their services, so you can rest assured that the only ads you see will be ones that have passed the exacting standards of New Hampshire’s state bar association. What this means for you is that you do not have to worry about an advertising lawyer promising unreachable results or making false claims.

7.      Make contact with your local probate court to ask for referrals.

Whether or not this option will work for you depends on what type of community you live in. If you live in a large, metropolitan city, then it may not be feasible; however, in smaller communities, court clerks are familiar with local estate planning lawyers, which ones the judges have a preference for, and which ones are the easiest to work with. For many lawyers, it is a point of pride to maintain good working relationships with judges and other court personnel. This can be a promising source for referrals.

This blog is meant to serve as a starting point in your search for the right NH estate planning lawyer. We do not have the time or space to address the unending amount of information you can find about estate planning lawyers on the Internet. However, in some instances, too much information can be detrimental, so stick with the basics and use these 7 tips to get your search off the ground.

To learn more about estate planning in New Hampshire or to speak with one of our professional and experienced lawyers, please contact our law firm today.