Tim Mahoney of Tim Mahoney Attorney at Law, PC has been practicing law for over 30 years and has been a Participating Attorney with Texas Legal since 2010. He currently serves Texans from his 5 firm locations with their estate planning needs. Mr. Mahoney sat down with Texas Legal to share his 3 pieces of advice for anyone thinking about starting an estate plan or updating an existing plan.
Do what you can now. Save the hard stuff for next year.
Mahoney’s top advice for Texans just starting their estate plan is to “Just get it done! If you hit an emotional roadblock, skip it; do it next year.” Are you having trouble deciding on medical power of attorney? Put it aside to deal with when you update your estate plan next year.
The most important part of creating a will or estate plan is to have a foundation in place; even if it isn’t extensive. “Do what you can now, then update it later,” says Mahoney. As a Participating Attorney with Texas Legal, Mahoney recommends his clients sign up for Texas Legal to help cover the costs of Estate Planning.
“Our goal is for all Texans to have quality Affordable Life Planning documents for themselves, at no cost to Texas Legal Members, except for some external costs such as notary fees, and/or filing fees,” says Mahoney.
If you’re wondering if you should update your will, you probably should.
Any life event is a cause for a will update. This includes marriage, divorce, new children, new assets, an inheritance, or even a change of heart. Mahoney points out, “With Texas Legal, you can update your will or estate plan once every plan year! So why not update it?” He’s right, as a member of Texas Legal you are able to update your will or estate planning documents every year.
It is simple to update your estate plan with Mahoney’s firm. They meet with their clients via zoom, discuss the various documents you may need or want to update, and then complete the documents on your timeline. From start to finish, there are 3-4 zoom calls, 8-9 documents depending on the situation, and usually takes only 2-3 weeks.
Don’t leave anything to chance
Sadly, death is one of the few certainties in life. Don’t leave anything to chance, make an estate plan for yourself and your loved ones. Mahoney said, “50-60% of people do not have wills. These people could be saving their family so much money and time by making a will before it is too late.” His estate planning advice is to complete your documents so you are not leaving anything to chance.
Probate can take 6-12 months even without being contested or disagreements. More complicated estates can take much longer. Famously, Prince’s estate took six years and a fortune to make it through the courts.
Tim Mahoney has created a streamlined process for creating or updating your estate plan so that your family will never have to go through the difficult process of probate.
On his website, Mahoney outlines 10 documents everyone needs for their estate plan.
- Transfer on Death Deed
- Directive to Physician
- Statutory Declaration of Guardian
- Medical Power of Attorney
- Statutory Durable Power of Attorney
- Appointment for Disposition of Remains
- HIPAA Release
- Out of Hospital DNR (Do Not Resuscitate)
- Declaration of Guardianship for Minor Children (if you have minor children)
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