We would like to update our living trust. In regard to fees, what is the worst case scenario?
Generally, if there have not been substantial changes in the law the attorney who drafted estate planning documents for you can often update them for a cost substantially less than the cost of new documents. If there have been substantial changes in the law, or you significantly (in terms of drafting not necessarily where the dollars go) change your plan, it might be cheaper or better (to assure consistency of drafting) to start with new documents. With the existing lawyer this might be somewhat cheaper than new documents. However, if you start with a new lawyer, in most cases no lawyer is sufficiently familiar with another lawyer's forms to use them and the new lawyer will generally have to start from scratch in drafting. Also, a new lawyer who does not know you will have to prepare a family tree, balance sheet, and review and understand your goals. This all takes time.
You should NEVER only want a living will. A proper plan, in addition to the above preparation (balance sheet, family data and goal analysis) requires durable power of attorney for financial matters, living will, health care proxy, will (and not a 2 page "pour over") as well as a revocable trust (if you want/need the trust, many don't). With a revocable trust the price range will vary by complexity and part of the country, but could be from $2,500 to $5,000. The range is wide, but no estate planning specialist can really estimate cost if they haven't met you, seen your data or understood your concerns.
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