Why Cost Matters
As you can imagine, I get the question “how much does a Hawaii estate plan cost” quite frequently.
And, it is a good question that I want to answer for you as clearly as I can, given that there is not a “one-size-fits-all solution” for every family, and I would run quickly away from any lawyer who can tell you exactly what your plan would cost via email or over the phone, without a comprehensive discovery process.
Shopping Based on Price
You see, this is exactly why most estate plans fail. Families shop around based on price (because they don’t know any other way to shop for an estate plan).
Shopping for an estate plan based on getting the lowest cost plan possible is the fastest path to leaving your family with a useless set of documents (maybe in a beautiful binder, but not worth the paper they are written on) that will not actually work for your family when they need it.
I am sure you have heard the saying, "you get what you pay for." When it comes to estate plans, this is so true. With a cheap plan, the upfront cost might be little, but the cost, in the end, will likely be far more than the upfront cost of a moderately-priced plan that actually works when you need it.
You get what you pay for, but sadly it will likely be your family that pays the price after you are gone.
Unfortunately, I see the negative effects of cheap estate planning when family members come to me during a time of grief with that fancy binder that sat on the shelf for years sending out signals of false security, full of out-of-date estate planning documents and find themselves stuck in Court or conflict, even though that is exactly what their loved ones thought they had paid someone to handle for them.
This is not a documents-only — you pay for documents then go on your way — firm.
At our firm, you pay for expert guidance and support that will be around for you and your loved ones throughout all stages of life (even when you are no longer around) — the documents themselves are included with that service.
Priced at the Intersection of Affordability and Effectiveness
In the meantime, here’s what I can assure you:
I've priced estate planning services for you and your family at the intersection of affordability and effectiveness.
I start all plans with a Family Wealth Planning Session™ ($750 value), which is designed to get you more financially organized than you have ever been before, and ensure that no matter what happens, none of your hard-earned assets will be lost to Hawaii's Unclaimed Property Program, when something happens to you.
I Will Educate You So You Can Shop Based on Desired Outcomes Instead of Price
Even if you never do any planning with me, the Family Wealth Planning Session™ alone is a hugely valuable process for you and your family, because you will create a full inventory of your assets and ensure your family knows what you have.
Then, when we meet, we will review everything you own, and discuss everyone you love, and you will understand exactly what would happen to everything you own and everyone you love, in the event of your death or incapacity.
If you do not have a plan, I will cover the plan the state has for you. If you do have a plan, I will review your current plan with you (I call this an estate plan review and check-up).
If you are not happy with your current plan (or the plan the state has for you), you will tell me what you would want to change, and I will look at the most effective, efficient, and affordable way to achieve your goals.
You Choose Your Fee Based On Your Budget and Needs
Here is the most important part for you to know: you will be making informed, educated, empowered decisions for the people you love, not just shopping around based on price.
And the best part is that as part of this process, you will actually choose your own fee based on your budget and the planning options that are most important to you and your family. There truly is no one-size-fits-all choice.
I have created a process, though, to educate you quickly and effectively so that you can make empowered, informed choices about what you want for the people you love so that you aren't simply choosing the cheapest option because you don't have any other basis for making your decisions.
You Choose Your Planning Level
With all of that background in mind:
A Family Wealth Planning Session™ is valued at $750. An Estate Plan Review and Checkup is valued at $950.
If during your Planning Session you choose to move forward and we help you design a comprehensive plan, your session fee is applied to the legal fee to create or update your estate plan. In some circumstances, we will waive the planning session fee. Contact us to find out more.
Our three levels of planning for a comprehensive plan (or update of your existing plan) vary depending on the choices you make during the Family Wealth Planning Session™.
Our plans range from starter plans for families with modest financial assets not very concerned about keeping the family out of the probate court process to more extensive plans that provide significant asset protection after death plus maximum protection for assets from inadvertent loss to the State Department of Unclaimed Property or the Court process.
After reading all of this, you probably want to at least have an idea about how much planning could cost. Generally, our starter plans begin at $1,999, but could be less or more depending on your needs and the options you choose.
Get Started Today
If after reading this, you are ready to make informed, empowered, educated decisions for the people you love (instead of just shopping around for the cheapest plan, which is unlikely to work when your family needs it and cost you a lot more in the end), get started by booking your Family Wealth Planning Session™ (or Estate Plan Review and Check-up).
NO TIME FOR MISTAKES
Learn the 6 Common Major Mistakes Hawaii Families Make When Choosing an Estate Planning Attorney
Let me help you protect the people and things you love to make sure they stay out of Court and out of conflict.