• How to Make a Simple Estate Plan and Skip the Lawyers

How to Make a Simple Estate Plan and Skip the Lawyers

Creating an estate plan will make sure you and your loved ones are taken care of if you become incapacitated or die. For larger estates, your estate plan may need to include a living trust and pour over will to avoid probate. Fortunately, there are many solutions to make a simple estate plan without a lawyer. Read on to learn more.

Estate Planning Testimonials

What our Clients Say...
“Lightning fast response, I had my very simple document on the same day as my order for the very fair and reasonable price of $325 (including the rush fee!) compared to my attorney who quoted me 3 weeks and $2500. I will definitely use these folks again and highly recommend them!”
L. Carnes
“I can’t say enough about the level of service and professionalism I received working with A People’s Choice. Emails were always responded to quickly and thoughtfully. They really care about the process and helping you get the best result with no up-selling. Of course they can’t provide legal advice, but I was referred to an attorney when I needed some questions answered who was very reasonable and easy to get a hold of as well. The process played out according to plan and I ended up saving a lot of money by going with A People’s Choice over an attorney.”
M. Rice
“I just recently moved to the Ventura area and didn’t know of any companies to help me with my legal paperwork. I am glad I chose A People’s Choice. They were very friendly and helped me with my documents in a very efficient way in very little time. Give them a try and you will be writing a positive review just as I did.”
D. Buelna
“A People’s Choice – Saved me time, money and hardship. The people are professional and a pleasure to work with, I totally recommend them to everyone! I will used them for all my legal documents in the future. Thank you!”
C. Lazalde
“I recently required the help of A People’s Choice, Inc. and found them to be entirely professional. Everything was done in short order yet all was explained to my satisfaction. They were friendly and courteous. I am happy and impressed.”
C. Zyobel
“Staff there were friendly, courteous and very professional. They did my Living Trust and the price was very reasonable. I am very pleased with their work and would highly recommend them.”
Anne M.
When my father passed away without a will, we needed help handling the transfer of his assets. Since there weren’t significant assets, I didn’t want to spend too much on the legal paperwork. A People’s Choice offered just the right service we needed. In particular, the staff was very responsive to our document filing needs, helping to turn around corrections almost immediately. They helped to ease a tough situation.
Michael C.
“We needed to add a few changes to our estate plan. Found “A People’s Choice” on the internet. People were very efficient and helpful. The cost was way less than an attorney would have charged. Thank you.”
Gene N.
“Extremely satisfied with the performance of A People’s Choice. The communication was excellent and all was handled in a timely efficient manner.”
Pam T.
“I needed to create a living trust, will and end of life statement. After checking with multiple attorneys I was shocked at the pricing. I needed to find an alternative approach versus paying thousands in attorney fees. I checked out several options for of a more do it yourself approach…and found A People’s Choice. They have been in the business for years and their experience/expertise is a great asset. Second, it is very helpful to have a real person you can work with versus a call center environment. Finally their prices are fair. Overall I rate A People’s Choice as excellent…quality, speed, personal service are qualities delivered!”
Bruce R.
“Made the process so easy for me. Also VERY prompt replies through email. So glad I used their services.“
Kristina C.
My wife and I needed to have some papers filed in court but found that traditional lawyers were quite expensive. We found the phone number for “A People’s Choice” and gave them a call, and am so happy that we did. They did a very professional job completing our paperwork and I might say, at a very reasonable price. And you can bet; I will contact A People’s Choice again if or when the need arises.
D. Hileman
“The service provided by A People’s Choice was very professional and comprehensive. We have used A People’s Choice on a previous occasion and were completely satisfied. We would highly recommend A People’s Choice to anyone!”
R. Betancourt
“A People’s Choice is extremely customer orientated and friendly. Their service was fast and reliable. in the future, should I need their services again, I will not hesitate to call them. All e-mails were answered with either a phone call or e-mail sometimes even late at night.”
Tar
“Super prices, great service, I can’t say enough about this place. We had A People’s Choice help us with a trust and POA. They are the best!”
Jessica S.
“How much is peace of mind worth to you? This company of hardworking, caring individuals will help you get the job done in the quickest, most efficient way. Conveniently located. Check it out. Thank you!”
Diana K.
“We love A People’s Choice. It’s legally run and professional. Everyone has to have a recommendation and license. Highly recommended.”
Christy C.
“This company is excellent! They helped me get through all of my paperwork, submitted it to the court, and now everything is complete. Everything was clear and almost too easy. I saved thousands of dollars!”
Seth M.
“Very professional, excellent follow up and easy to work with. I will recommend them often! The staff rocks!”
Gene A.
“I had the opportunity to use A People’s Choice again, Wow doesn’t say enough for the way the staff was able to get me in and out and all my answers answered. Very Professional, Organized and Friendly. I highly recommend!”
Debbie E.
“I have worked with A People’s Choice since September 2013. They are very knowledgeable and experienced. Their work is done professionally and timely. They show a real concern for my situation. I recommend you give them the opportunity to be of service to you.”
D. Echeverra
“A People’s Choice is awesome! They made the legal documentation process painless. I highly recommend A People’s Choice. The name says it all.”
Eric J.
“I was very happy with the service received. They were extremely responsive by phone and email and completed the document in less than 24 hours! All questions were answered promptly. I would highly recommend this service to anyone needing a legal document prepared!”
M.D.
“A People’s Choice is a great option to get legal documents prepared inexpensively. They offer a very professional, low cost service for all sorts of legal paperwork, from living trusts to divorce, bankruptcy and everything in between. I always received a prompt reply to my inquiries and found the legal guide they gave me extremely helpful and informative. If you know what you want to do, don’t need legal advice and just need help preparing legal paperwork, I strongly recommend calling this company. You won’t be disappointed and will save lots of money as compared to using an expensive attorney!”
Kathryn R.
“A People’s Choice prepares legal documents so you can represent yourself and still look like you know what you’re doing. I utilized their services recently and found them to be professional as well as extremely helpful. I couldn’t be happier.”
Evan J.
“I used A People’s Choice for a probate transaction and later for the preparation of a deed. All went smoothly. They were professional, efficient, easy to work with and reasonably-priced. Highly recommended.”
David S.
“This team is efficient, professional, ethical and easy to work with. Any of my questions were responded to immediately. They did everything they could to help me. I highly recommend their services.”
Leigh A.
“Cannot remember how I found A People’s Choice. I think it was through a web search. In any case I found the company and have been and am completely satisfied with the service provided. The person I worked with (Sandra) was very friendly whenever we spoke on the phone and always responded promptly to any emails. The answers were always clear. The entire process was smooth and painless. I would recommend A People’s Choice without hesitation.”
Les A.
“When I first saw all of the documents required to file I was overwhelmed at the thought of it all. I was already dealing with the stress of everything else, I did not want to deal with the courts, a mountain load of paperwork and trips to file as well. I looked around and A People’s Choice had some great reviews and a decent price. I am VERY happy that I went with A People’s Choice. They were very, very helpful, Sandy was very nice and patient with me, despite all of my questions. With her assistance she helped to make this difficult time much easier by making the tedious paperwork process very easy and it didn’t take too much time at all! I definitely recommend A People’s Choice.”
M.McCleod
“Great service. Highly professional and efficient creating legal documents. I am completely satisfied and highly recommend them to others. I am so glad I found you on the internet. People who are looking for professional legal services look no further, try A People’s Choice.”
Radtech N.
“A People’s Choice is a business that delivers what they promise. I was treated like a VIP by their staff and Sandy was the best. As for their services, they promptly delivered all of the official documents and fillings on my behalf and their price is more than reasonable. In short, this is a business that I will always recommend and continue to use. Thank you!”
Juan B.
“I was in need of some serious help and didn’t know what to do. I had contacted a lawyer and he wanted to charge me $1800.00. Then I found A People’s Choice. They were great. They got my paper work started and at a much lower cost, and steered me, with the help of lots of paper work, in the right direction. I am very grateful for the company’s services and would recommend them to any one that may need the services they offer. Thank you again.”
April R.
“I needed help understanding and filling out legal documents but I didn’t have enough money to pay for an attorney. I searched the internet for a short period of time looking for assistance and when I found A People’s Choice, I was relieved to know that I would get the exact service that I needed at an affordable price. The staff was very professional and helpful with my legal documents. They worked around my schedule and responded to my emails on a timely manner. They took care of all of the paper work and filing and kept me posted. I would highly recommend A People’s Choice for your legal documents as you will get outstanding service at an affordable price. “
Sharon B.

Get help Creating a Simple Estate Plan!

  • or call 1-800-747-2780

Estate Planning Overview

Making a simple estate plan can protect your assets and shield your family from liabilities upon your incapacitation or death. Planning your estate may include one or more of the following:

  • Decide which loved ones will receive your property once you pass away
  • Designate an executor to probate your estate and settle your affairs
  • Designate guardians for your children
  • Avoid a full probate
  • Make sure you decide what happens to you if you become incapacitated

Common Simple Estate Plan Documents

The following are a list of estate planning documents you may need when you make a simple estate plan:

  1. Will. A will is a simple estate plan document that describes who receives your property if you pass away. When a person creates a will, the State won’t control who receives property according to California’s intestate laws. Most people are capable of creating a will without consulting with a lawyer. We definitely don’t recommend those fill-in-the-blank wills. A People’s Choice can prepare your will so your estate will go to the people you choose – not those selected under California law.
  1. Living Trust. A revocable living trust is another common simple estate plan document used by individuals with larger estates. If you own a house or land, creating a living trust can avoid probate of your estate.  A revocable trust is also a good estate planning tool for estates valued over $150,000. With a living trust, the assets can quickly transfer to the people named, avoiding a probate process after a person dies. There are different options to create a living trust such as using online software or a book. We don’t recommend doing either. Although you don’t need to hire an expensive lawyer, it’s always better to use the services of an experienced professional. A People’s Choice has over 40 years of experience preparing these types of documents.
  1. Power of Attorney. Every simple estate plan should include a back-up plan if someone becomes incapacitated and cannot handle their finances. A power of attorney document allows you to appoint a person to manage your financial affairs if something unforeseen happens and you cannot handle your finances yourself. You can create a power of attorney that becomes effective right away or one that only becomes effective if you are incapacitated. Keep in mind, however, once a durable power of attorney becomes effective, it will stay in place, even if you later can handle your own affairs.
  1. Health Care Directive. The final document included in most simple estate plans is a healthcare directive. This document allows you to appoint a person to make medical decisions on your behalf. Remember, as with a power of attorney, this document is your voice if you cannot speak for yourself because you are incapacitated. In addition, a healthcare directive can include your wishes for health care treatment, organ donation, and final funeral arrangements.

At A People’s Choice, we can help you make a simple estate plan for a fraction of the cost of what an attorney would charge. People are often unaware that our office uses the same estate planning legal software that many California attorneys use! Using our services you get the same documentation for hundreds of dollars less. We believe it is always better to hire a legal document preparer to create your estate plan than using automated online services. Yes, there are other online solutions such as LegalZoom and Rocket Lawyer. Individuals who rely on these types of do-it-yourself estate planning sites expose themselves to documents that are either 1) incorrect  2) inconsistent or 3) invalid.  Given these points, our experience has shown that documents prepared through these sites are more susceptible to being invalid or contain conflicting clauses. As a result, if you don’t want to hire a lawyer, we strongly believe it is always better to work with an experienced legal document preparer. Contact us today for more information about our simple estate plan services. You can reach us through our website or by calling 800-747-2780.

Get help with your Legal documents today!

A People’s Choice can save you hundreds of dollars by preparing your legal documents instead of an expensive attorney!

GET STARTED!

Was this article helpful? We would love to know your thoughts! If you found this article helpful, please check the LIKE button below. Your feedback helps us plan topics for future articles.

 

By |2019-05-19T17:45:31-07:00April 28th, 2019|Estate Planning|0 Comments

About the Author:

Sandra M. McCarthy, founder of A People’s Choice Inc., has worked exclusively in the legal field since 1976. She served as the 2004-2005 President of CALDA (California Association of Legal Document Assistants). She obtained a Paralegal Certificate from the University of California, Santa Barbara. During her career in the legal field, she has worked as a freelance paralegal, law office manager and paralegal studies teacher, and has co-authored numerous legal publications and written hundreds of self-help legal articles. As a registered Legal Document Assistant, Sandy is dedicated to providing affordable, low-cost, self-help document preparation services for California consumers in all 58 counties.

Leave A Comment

error: Alert: Content is protected !!