Who Should Prepare Your Estate Plan For You?
Choosing the best option to assist you and your family with your estate planning needs can be very confusing. There are hundreds of options available, from “do-it-yourself” books and online websites, travelling “trust mills,” and local general practice attorneys who advertise that they do “wills and livings trusts” as part of a long laundry list of other legal services such as personal injury, bankruptcy, family law, etc.
“Do-it-yourself” books and websites offer fast, cheap solutions, often delivering them in the same day. They imply that living trusts are common and ordinary, that they are all the same, and there is basically no difference between what they provide and what attorneys provide. However, because they are not lawyers, they can’t ask you all the right questions, and they can’t legally answer your questions. In fact, if you have questions, you are told by them to see an attorney. Customization for your family situation and the needs of your family is not an option.
Local general practice attorneys who sell “wills and living trusts” often have very little training in estate planning, and usually use simple statutory forms for many of the important documents that need to be prepared. They generally have a very short interview process, and will likely use a “fill-in-the-blanks” trust document that can be prepared with little effort or thought. Customization for your family situation and the needs of your family is often not an option for them. Important issues concerning “blended” or second marriages, non-citizen spouses, planning for special needs family members, and the ability to do estate tax planning and asset protection planning for a family’s inheritance may be ignored or overlooked.
Since 1980, it has been my mission to help individuals and families in the Greater San Francisco Bay Area with their estate and inheritance planning needs. Although I work with families of all ages, both married and unmarried, I focus on serving families with young children with the with the goals of making sure that the children are properly cared for and properlly provided for if the unthinkable should occur. My honest, conscientious commitment to my clients makes me an attorney you can trust to plan for your family’s future. Comments from some of my clients can be read here in Testimonials.
Because every family’s needs and concerns are different, every living trust estate plan that I create for my clients is custom-drafted by me to reflect the specific needs and concerns of my clients. My years of experience, my long membership in WealthCounsel, and my status as a Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law gives me the ability to create the perfect plan for you and your family.
I serve the following communities and counties: San Jose, Santa Clara, Sunnyvale, Cupertino, Campbell, Los Gatos, Monte Sereno, Saratoga, Palo Alto, Los Altos, Milpitas, Los Altos Hills, Alviso, Mountain View, Menlo Park, Redwood City, E. Palo Alto, Fremont, Newark, Hayward, Morgan Hill, Gilroy, Santa Cruz, Scotts Valley, and Felton. Santa Clara County, San Mateo County, Santa Cruz County, Alameda County, Contra Costa County, and San Francisco County.
Attorney Robert P. Bergman, Board Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law, assists families in the San Francisco Bay Area with Estate Planning, Special Needs Planning for children and adults, special planning for retirement plan assets, and trust administration.