We Answer Some Frequently Asked Questions About Estate Planning

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  • I am embarrassed about not having done my planning yet or my family situation. how sensitive is your firm to this problem?

    We have many clients that have come to us later to start doing their planning. It is an easy thing to put off! In addition we have people with tough family dynamics or financial issues. We assure you, that we have seen it all and promise there is no judgment from anyone here at the firm.

  • Can I keep money in my trust for my child's lifetime?

    Yes, we can prepare a trust for your children that can help protect them from outside influences or even themselves with a lifetime asset protection trust.

  • Should I leave everything equally to my children?

    Typically people feel they should leave everything equally to their children. While that is a personal decision, it is not required and sometimes not recommended. Sometimes it does not make sense if there is a child with a disability or a big age difference between kids.




  • What does a conservatorship cost?

    A limited, non-contested conservatorship is a court process and costs approximately $4,000, plus court fees. To find out what a conservatorship may cost your family, we recommend you call our wonderful Client Services Director, Bonnie Johnson. 

  • What does a trust administration cost?

    Trust administration costs vary depending on the size and complexity of the estate.  In general, trust administration fees are usually between 1%- 1.5% of the estate.  Some estates do not warrant even a 1% fee, and may be done on an hourly basis.   

  • What do you charge for assistance after my plan is set up?

    After you become our client, we will meet with you, talk to you, and email with you, anytime without a fee.  We want to hear from you and want to make sure your plan is up to date, and you can count on us for guidance now and always. If you do want to change your actual legal documents down the road, the fee is typically nominal compared to the initial set up, making it easy for you to maintain your plan. Our ongoing service is a tremendous value and one of the major reasons clients select us as their attorneys. 

  • What does probate cost?

    Probate fees for an uncontested probate are statutory in nature and set by the California Probate Code. (Cal. Probate Code § § 10810, 10811.) Fees are based on the total market value of the assets subject to probate. Probate fees are usually paid out of the late loved one’s estate. Most probates cost between 5% and 8% of the total estate value, depending on the size of the estate. Please call our warm Client Services Director for more information on probate costs. 

  • Do you offer payment plans?

    Yes, our firm offers non-interest payment plans so you can obtain the plan you need without financial burden. 

  • What does it cost to meet with Meier Law Firm?

    Families wishing to talk with us should begin by scheduling an initial planning session.  The current planning session fee for a 90-minute meeting is $750.00, which can be credited toward any future planning you do with our law firm.  However, we often have special programs and promotions that waive the initial planning fee.  Please call our warm Client Services Director, Bonnie Johnson, to see schedule a planning session, and see if a fee waiver is possible for you.  For sessions where a fee waiver is applied, we do require you to still reserve the session with your credit card.  If you attend your session, or cancel or reschedule with advanced notice, your card will not be charged.   

  • How much does it cost to set up an estate plan?

    Most reputable estate planning firms in California can provide a comprehensive estate plan for $3500-$5500 depending on your needs. Our firm offers different levels of planning depending on your needs.  Our plans range from $1500 to $12000 depending on the services we are providing. Most families find themselves in the $4000 range. 

  • I have an estate plan already and need to make changes. Can your firm help me even if you did not prepare the plan?

    We typically do not make amendments to plans prepared by other attorneys because of liability concerns.  However, we can amend and restate your trust in its entirety, so you can keep the name of your trust, but update all the content to become current with recent changes in law, and to reflect your current wishes.  We can also provide you a full review of your current estate plan, so you are aware of what changes should be considered.