Thank you to LegalSpark for sponsoring this needed conversation. I was compensated for this post, but of course, all opinions are my own.
I know a lot of you who follow this blog are like me: working moms with young-ish kids in your 30s and early 40s. We are BOSSES, we get stuff done, we are organized…and we have no clue about Estate Planning.
I was listening to a friend the other day bemoaning the fact that her mother didn't have a will. And the mess it had created for her and her siblings. I had to stop and think: what would happen to Pookah if God forbid, something happened to both his Dad and me? Oh, I've told the important folks that they are in charge of Pookah, but did I have it written down what I wanted to happen? I want to be able to take care of him, even after I am gone.
I felt kind of morbid thinking about it, but I knew I needed to know more about Estate Planning. I wanted to make sure that after I am gone, Pookah doesn't have to worry about anything. That's when I contacted LegalSpark. LegalSpark is a tool for those looking for advice in a variety of areas, like Estate Planning. LegalSpark is a first of it's kind Georgia Tech Company that's like “dial-a-doc”, except that one of the 50 plus local lawyers calls you in minutes. I love that I was able to speak to a Lawyer right here in Georgia for 20 minutes, no strings attached and clarify and get direction for estate planning.
Here is what I learned:
What exactly IS Estate Planning?
Estate planning is basically planning out what you want to happen when you pass away. For me, the main concern making sure Pookah is taken care of if something happens to both of us. So that includes a Will, a Financial Power of Attorney, and an Advanced Directive.
When and why do I need a will?
NOW. A Will clearly states your wishes about how you'd like your property and other assets distributed once you pass away. And it would give instructions on who should care for Pookah in case C Dub is not there.
What is a Financial Power of Attorney and why would I need one?
A power of attorney (or POA) is a powerful legal document that instructs how your affairs should be managed under specific conditions. A Financial Power of Attorney gives someone the power to act on your behalf in financial matters. It can be long-term (for instance, if you become incapacitated) or short-term.
Do I need to actually appoint a guardian or is it ok that my child has Godparents?
Technically no, but to avoid confusion and save time and money for said Godparents, appoint them as guardians in your will.
Why would I need an Advanced Directive?
An advanced Directive or a living will spells out your exact wishes about your medical care and end of life decisions in case you become incapacitated or unable to tell someone what you want your self( like you are in a coma). I don't know about you, but I have very specific instructions that I want to be followed to the letter.
Do I really need an attorney to set this up?
While having an attorney do this can save you time and make sure everything is set up just right..technically no. With LegalSpark, you do have the option to speak with an estate planning lawyer to make sure the documents you are creating are legally binding and correct.
I got SO MUCH information out of that 20-minute call! It prompted me to get myself together and get all the documents I need so I can check estate planning off of my to-do list.
FAQ about LegalSpark:
What else do the lawyers at LegalSpark help with?
- Bankruptcy & Collections
- Business ( for my blogger friends looking to start an LLC this year!)
- Criminal Defense
- DUI and Traffic
- Elder Law & SS/Disability
- Estate Planning
- Family & Divorce
- Intellectual Property( trademarks and copyrights my writer friends)
- Labor and Employment
- Real Estate
- Tort & Personal Injury
How Much is it?
$50 for a 20-minute call with a qualified lawyer.
So how does this really work?
Decide which one of the topics above you need to speak with a lawyer about, pay the $50 fee, and a lawyer calls you on your personal line.
What if I need more than 20 minutes?
This first call is meant to be just an introductory call. If you need more than 20 minutes take it! You won't be charged extra.
Is this service available everywhere?
As of right now, this service is only available in Georgia.
My call with LegalSpark yesterday really helped me focus on what documents I need to gather and what I need to start estate planning for my family. If you are interested in learning more about estate planning or any of the other legal topics that LegalSpark covers, contact LegalSpark today to get legal advice!