For some time I have been meaning to write a will. Procrastination being a difficult thing to overcome, I would appreciate any advice on how to locate an appropriate lawyer to prepare such a document. Would contacting the local Bar Association and asking for a referral be a good way to go? How about the Yellow Pages? I am of course looking for the three C’s: competence, convenience and cost effectiveness (i.e. cheapness).
Depends on the complexity of your situation. If you have a net worth of, say, less than $600,000 and no unusual special needs to take care of (for example, a child with permanent medical problems), then most attorneys should be able to take care of you if they list estate planning as part of their expertise.
However, If you have a complex or large estate, you’ll want to go beyond the neighborhood lawyer who also does divorces, defends DUIs and handles real estate closings.
You idea of a bar referral is a good one. Another good idea is to ask for a referral from a friend who needed similar services in the past. Also, if you know any lawyers in your area, they may be able to refer you to someone, even if they don’t do that work themselves.
Many thanks for the (Random) advice (Ha! I slay me). Yes, my situation is not very complex. I guess I am going to have to resort to actually picking up the phone and calling someone.:o
I used to work at my local bar association and they provided a lawyer referral service. They would find you someone who specialized in what you were looking for and set up an initial consultation, which cost $25. I think all the attorneys were low cost. At least you know they’re not total crooks or the bar wouldn’t be recommending them. It’s definitely better than the yellow pages.
Listen to Random and chula.
Look for a firm which has one or more lawyers who specialize in wills and estates (so they know what they are doing), and who also have lawyers who actually litigate estate matters (so they have a better idea of where screw-ups might happen).
To ensure personal attention, have a friend who is a client of the firm you want recommend you their lawyer.