The Lakefront Law process is unique and designed to be personalized to you. We start with a Planning Session designed to show exactly what would happen under your current plan or no plan. You decide what you like or don't like about that.
The planning process includes a Legacy Planning Session, document signing, then plan delivery. But the process doesn't really end there. We have processes in place to make sure that your plan stays updated as your life changes. Your package fee includes two hours of consultation at every 3 year plan anniversary to determine if your plan needs to be updated, along with a complimentary Power of Attorney update. Additional plan updates are always affordable, with flat rate fees agreed to in advance.
The Legacy Planning Session is what makes our process so special. This is not just an initial consultation. Rather, this is a working meeting designed to uncover your goals. The first step of estate planning is to gather all of your assets and information into one place. Did you know that there is $600 Million in unclaimed property in Wisconsin alone? Don't let your property get added to that. We make sure your loved ones know what you have and how to access it if needed. One purpose of the Legacy Planning Session Homework is to get that process started.
Secondly, we use the homework to educate you on how the law works for your specific and unique circumstances. During the Legacy Planning Session, we look at how each of your assets is treated if you pass away or become incapacitated under your current plan (or the State's plan if you don't have a plan). We discuss who would come forward to make your decisions or care for your children. We talk about your family dynamics and look for potential issues. We provide clarity on what would happen without further action.
After all of that, you decide what you like or do not like about the current plan. Then we fix it. Most people start out saying "I need a Will." That might be true, but we are going to show you what a Will does for you before we decide which documents you need. Documents are necessary, but they are only there to support a good plan. The documents are not the focus; your desired outcome is what we are planning for.
Now that you know what you want your plan to look like, how long does the process take? It takes about 6-8 weeks total. First, we have the Legacy Planning Session. About 4 weeks later you sign your documents. We may talk a few times between the Planning Session and signing to make sure that everything is accurate. About 2 weeks later, we go over your plan and show you how to use it. If you have a Trust, we guide you through the trust funding process and make sure it is done correctly. Then every 3 years we revisit your plan to make sure it will still work when you need it.
All fees are flat rate and are agreed to in advance. You will never get a surprise bill or be charged extra for having questions. In fact, questions are strongly encouraged! Melinda can help you best when she has all important information, including understanding your family dynamics. The fee structure is designed to encourage communication. You won't be scared to call or send an email because you fear a bill will come later.
Packages generally range from $2,000 to $8,000, but can go outside of this at times. It is a 'choose your own fee' structure. You decide what is important to you, and we find a package to meet that need. You won't purchase a plan unless you can see the value or future cost savings. We won't know your fee until we go through the process to see what is important to you. The higher end fees are for people who want to use sophisticated asset protection or tax avoidance techniques, and who want someone to fund their trust for them (people with more money than time). The lower fee package will include all of the most important foundational elements of your plan, like the Kids Protection Plan®, establishing Wills, documenting who will make decisions for you, and much more. It's also a plan that can grow with your family.
The best part is that once you are a client, you can contact Melinda for anything. She may not be the one to work on your other legal issues, but can get you pointed in the right direction or be a first line sounding board. You gain a trusted advisor, a 'phone a friend' lawyer.