Ritchie Wealth Planning Sesssion FAQs
1. What is a Ritchie Wealth Planning Session?
Answer: The Ritchie Wealth Planning Session (“RWPS”) is a meeting with Attorney Chad A. Ritchie that usually lasts between 1 – 1.5 hours. Prior to this meeting we send you an Estate Planning Questionnaire that we ask you to complete and return to our office 4 business days prior to our meeting date. This Questionnaire asks various information about you and your family, your estate planning goals, and your estate assets. Once we receive this information we prepare a proprietary one page “Probate Asset Analysis Diagram” that
becomes your Estate Planning Roadmap. Most of the time we spend at this meeting is going over your Probate Asset Analysis Diagram. Through this Diagram – you will understand how estate panning actually works; the difference between “Probate Assets” and “Non-Probate” Assets and whether you would need a “Will-Based” estate plan or a “Trust-Based” Estate Plan. You will understand what assets your Will does and does not control. We will also determine if your estate will be subject to any estate tax. This is a powerful meeting for those wanting to have their estate plan done or updated.
2. How much does a the RWPS cost?
Answer: There are two options:
$250.00 flat fee -- If you complete your Estate Planning Questionnaire and include an inventory of your Estate Assets with the Questionnaire as we request and submit the completed Questionnaire to us no later than 4 business days prior to our meeting.
$750.00 flat fee -- If you can’t or don’t want to complete the Estate Planning Questionnaire and/or provide an inventory of the Assets of your estate prior to our meeting. If you want to meet without having those things done, we can help you complete the Estate Planning Questionnaire and the Asset Inventory -- but it will take another meeting to actually have our RWPS and go over the Probate Assets Analysis Diagram.
3. Why do I have to pay the $250.00 flat fee when I schedule my appointment and not after we meet?
Answer: There are two reasons we have people pay the $250.00 flat fee when scheduling the appointment:
Time: We have a limited number of time slots reserved for RWPS meetings each week and we are usually booked out 4 – 6 weeks with client meetings. RWPS meetings are reserved for people that are serious about having their estate analyzed so they know how their assets should be organized to avoid probate, estate taxes, etc. and who want to know what type of estate plan is best for them.
Value: The RWPS Meeting has been developed over the years to provide tremendous value to you. We put in a lot of time reviewing your Estate Planning Questionnaire and preparing your Probate Asset Analysis Diagram prior to our meeting. This meeting is not just a “meet and greet” type meeting with the Ritchie Law Office, Ltd. This is a “working” meeting where you are going to actually understand how estate planning works; how your assets should be organized for estate planning purposes and what estate plan is best for you. Based upon time and expertise involved and the information provided to you at this meeting – we could charge anywhere from $750 - $1500 for the RWPS.
4. Does the RWPS fee count toward any fees that the Ritchie Law Office, Ltd. charge for preparing and implementing Estate Plan Documents?
Answer: No – the fee for the RWPS is a stand-alone fee that is separate from any other fees charged to implement any estate plan or prepare any estate plan documents.
5. What are the typical fees that the Ritchie Law Office, Ltd. charges for estate planning?
Answer: Just as it would be impossible to answer the question – how much does a new car cost – it is impossible to quote “typical” fees for an estate plan. Like cars – there are many different types of estate plans – ranging from simple to very complex. With that being said -- very simple plans for a single person start at around $750 and go from there. A “Will-Based” plan for a Married Couple with Power of Attorney Documents and a “TODI” document to make sure their house does not go into probate will cost around $2000.00. We do offer a discount to young families that need a “Will-Based” Plan to name guardians and trustees for their minor children. “Trust-Based” Plans start at $4000 and go up from there depending on the complexity of the Trust. For high net worth clients with farms, businesses, investment property, etc. we either charge by the hour or quote a flat fee amount once we have fully audited their assets and determined their estate planning needs.
6. What happens once the RWPS Meeting is over?
Answer: At the end of the meeting you should be at a place where you are comfortable determining whether a “Will-based” plan or a “Trust-based” estate plan is right for you. Usually, as we go through the RWPS process, it becomes clear what type of estate plan is needed. You can decide whether you want to move forward with getting your estate plan done or updated with the Ritchie Law Office, Ltd. at that point. If you do want to get things started we have a simple engagement form that explains the fees involved, the documents that will be prepared and the time frame for getting things done. We also schedule and write down our next meeting date in the engagement form.