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Has anyone used Legal Insurance?

Home Estate Planning Has anyone used Legal Insurance?

  • Avatar ITEngineer 
    Participant
    Status: Other Professional
    Posts: 319
    Joined: 05/09/2017

    New for 2019, my employer is now offering Legal Insurance. Normally I would pass at all these insurance extra’s, but for only $20/mo it will include Wills & Estate Planning plus Trusts. We are looking to redo our Wills & create a trust for our middle school age kids (which should have been done 13 years ago)

    Does anyone have experience with these legal services? Over the years, we were quoted $2-3k from a number of people whom had it done. $240/year seems like a steal in comparison. In theory, I would only keep this for one year (or maybe not?)

    Looking for feedback – what am I missing?

    #157958 Reply
    Craigy Craigy 
    Participant
    Status: Spouse
    Posts: 2059
    Joined: 09/16/2016

    Any attorney can draft you a will.

    It depends on how complex your planning needs to be.

    Do you get to pick the attorney?  I suspect not.

    If you’re paying $20/mo, or $240/year, you’re talking about an estate plan that is only worth $60 or $70 of attorney time, at best.  Likely a fill-in-the-blank estate plan.

    LEVEL 1 WCI FORUM MEMBER.

    #157976 Reply
    Avatar ITEngineer 
    Participant
    Status: Other Professional
    Posts: 319
    Joined: 05/09/2017
    If you’re paying $20/mo, or $240/year, you’re talking about an estate plan that is only worth $60 or $70 of attorney time, at best. Likely a fill-in-the-blank estate plan.

    Click to expand…

    That’s what I’m afraid of…that said, I’m not trying to do anything radical (IMO) and never understood the high costs everyone else quoted us. At least they feel extremely high.

    But – do I need more than an ‘fill in the blank’ estate plan? Basically I just don’t want my kids to get all the money when they turn 18 if we have an untimely demise. Should have been done a long time ago…..but it wasn’t.

    #157983 Reply
    Craigy Craigy 
    Participant
    Status: Spouse
    Posts: 2059
    Joined: 09/16/2016
    If you’re paying $20/mo, or $240/year, you’re talking about an estate plan that is only worth $60 or $70 of attorney time, at best. Likely a fill-in-the-blank estate plan. 

    Click to expand…

    That’s what I’m afraid of…that said, I’m not trying to do anything radical (IMO) and never understood the high costs everyone else quoted us. At least they feel extremely high.

    But – do I need more than an ‘fill in the blank’ estate plan? Basically I just don’t want my kids to get all the money when they turn 18 if we have an untimely demise. Should have been done a long time ago…..but it wasn’t.

    Click to expand…

    If you’re trying to control the assets after death, personally I think you do.

    That desire opens the door to a lot more questions and decisions you’ll have to make, and thus more the drafter has to take into consideration.

    On the flipside, if you spend your $20, and get something prepared, and you don’t like it, it’s not like you’re out a lot of money.

     

    LEVEL 1 WCI FORUM MEMBER.

    #158056 Reply
    Avatar Tim 
    Participant
    Status: Accountant
    Posts: 3105
    Joined: 09/18/2018

    Usually you can discontinue services during the year.
    Line up your legal requests for January.

    Honestly, attorneys use paralegals and software extensively. You may find “additional services “ available
    but it could be reasonably priced.
    If you have a clear picture of custody, trustee , how you want it used and when it ends your all set.
    Definitely worth $20/$40.
    Hey, you might get a break for a review and revisions if you need it locally.

    #158153 Reply
    MPMD MPMD 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 2510
    Joined: 05/01/2017

    I doubt you are going to get quality estate planning on a $20/mo plan.

    There are a few threads discussing cost of setting up trust, ours was about $2500 which seems high-normal.

    I echo what others have said that you’re probably going to get a LegalZoom will as part of this deal — better than nothing but probably not what a mid-career doc w/ kids needs.

    #158175 Reply
    Liked by Craigy
    Avatar Dont_know_mind 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 959
    Joined: 11/21/2017

    Just spend a bit of money now and get one set up properly.
    You don’t want your children finding your will was a cut and paste job that has issues. And then having to see a trust attorney for $750/hour to get it sorted out.
    I suppose you could get someone else’s will and just change the names to yours but that would not be recommended and a $60 job is probably not going to cut it either.

    #158201 Reply
    Hank Hank 
    Moderator
    Status: Attorney
    Posts: 1411
    Joined: 03/27/2017

    Do you have an estate plan in place now?  If not, then the $20 fill in the blank estate plan (or Nolo, or LegalZoom) should be superior to dying intestate.

    Don’t do anything irreversible. That said, it might not be a terrible idea to get something in place, then spend ~$2000-$5000 for an ACTEC fellow in your state to do a really solid plan tailored to your specific needs.  Most people dither and put off hiring an estate attorney since it’s an unpleasant task to think about.  Doesn’t mean you won’t get hit by a bus while you’re waiting a few years to craft the perfect plan.

    #158218 Reply
    Avatar ITEngineer 
    Participant
    Status: Other Professional
    Posts: 319
    Joined: 05/09/2017
    Do you have an estate plan in place now?

    Click to expand…

    No. We have wills, but the kids get all the money (they are middle school ages). It’s what we setup years ago. No trusts.

    We are also trying to pick new guardians (should something happen to both of us) – that’s a hard process, which we have gotten nowhere on. We no longer want the kids to end up with grand parents.

    There have been some unfortunate health diagnoses that are prompting us forward here. Even with that as a driver, I still have a hard time spending $2-5k on this.

     

    #158998 Reply
    Avatar Tim 
    Participant
    Status: Accountant
    Posts: 3105
    Joined: 09/18/2018
    We are also trying to pick new guardians (should something happen to both of us) – that’s a hard process, which we have gotten nowhere on. We no longer want the kids to end up with grand parents.

    Click to expand…

    No attorney or setup helps you with those decisions. If you are like most, everything to the spouse to take care of herself and kids. Then what?

    Raising the kids is the most important, then the choice of how to manage the funds. Two separate issues. You have to decide how you would want that to happen before an attorney can help with alternatives to make that happen. It’s hard, but only you and your spouse can make that choice.

    Everything else is asset preservation and the eventual ownership of the estate.

    #159027 Reply
    Avatar Dr.A 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 13
    Joined: 10/23/2018

    Our company offers this for about $15/mo (Hyatt insurance plan).  I didn’t purchase this year, but a few colleagues did.  Not every lawyer takes it, but there are a few in the area that do.  For those who purchased, sounds like it worked out well and they seem satisfied with results.  One had a revocable trust set up, others have had real estate transactions covered (in NY lawyers typically part of the transaction), and another colleague had a divorce covered with this insurance.  The list of covered services pretty impressive, all without a deductible.

    #159122 Reply
    Liked by ITEngineer

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