“form” estate planning documents can lead to BIG probems

April 5, 2014 - Posted by: admin - In category:

taxes - No Responses

Penny wise and pound foolish–yet another example in the context of “do it yourself” estate planning.  A sad story that should have been prevented.

This is something we have discussed often, but it has recently come up again with regard to an unfortunate story in Florida, where a woman decided to utilize a “do it yourself” legal form service–thinking that she was saving money.  This case ended up before the Florida Supreme Court.

Concurring Justice Barbara Pariente saw the ruling as a cautionary tale. “While I appreciate that there are many individuals in this state who might have difficulty affording a lawyer,” Pariente said, “this case does remind me of the old adage ‘penny-wise and pound-foolish.’ …

“I therefore take this opportunity to highlight a cautionary tale of the potential dangers of utilizing pre-printed forms and drafting a will without legal assistance. As this case illustrates, that decision can ultimately result in the frustration of the testator’s intent, in addition to the payment of extensive attorney’s fees—the precise results the testator sought to avoid in the first place.”

CLICK HERE to read a summary of this sad story–all of which could have been prevented had the person in question simply retained a competent estate planning attorney.

At Pharos Law Group, we specialize in estate planning. 

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