The estate planning process is all about preparing for eventualities and possibilities. Some events, such as death, are inevitable, while others, such as medical incapacitation, are possible but not guaranteed. An estate plan should be able to handle both types of situations, as well as ensure that your goals are met.
When you begin the estate planning process you should plan to sit down with an experienced and qualified estate planning attorney and discuss some fairly basic information. The purpose of this initial discussion is to both allow your attorney the chance to get to know what you want, as well as give you some basic information about the process.
It isn’t uncommon for new clients to be hesitant in what they tell their attorney. You are, after all, speaking to a stranger about very personal details. It’s natural to not want to reveal some information, especially information you think is embarrassing or personal.
Always remember that your estate planning lawyer is there for you. Your attorney has a legal responsibility to keep a client’s information in confidence. Attorneys who don’t keep client information confidential risk their law licenses.
But saying that your attorney will keep your secrets is one thing: believing it is another. You need to feel comfortable around your estate planning lawyer, and you can begin this process during your first meeting. Allow yourself to develop a connection, a feeling of trust. If you find it hard to do with the attorney you speak to, perhaps a different attorney would be better for your needs.