How to Find an Estate Planning Attorney

graphic of woman searching for an estate planning attorney online

If you have specialized estate planning needs and already determined that you need an estate planning attorney, the next step is finding one. Rather than rolling the dice on the first local attorney you see on Google, go with one of these options instead.

If you have a financial advisor...

Financial advisors and investment managers are great sources of referrals for estate planning attorneys. Most experienced advisors have previously partnered with attorneys to not only create plans for their clients, but also administer or manage plans after a client passes away.

Effective collaboration among your financial advisor, estate planning attorney, and executor or trustee is key to minimizing headaches in the estate administration process. By choosing an attorney with whom your financial advisor has already established a strong working relationship, you can set up your estate for a smooth, successful administration.

If you don't have a financial advisor...

Friends and family are another common source of referrals, but depending on where you live and your financial situation, you may find that your geography or unique needs differ from theirs. In that case, you may wish to engage an ACTEC Fellow.

The American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC) is a group of peer-elected trust and estate attorneys across the US and internationally. If you are looking for a highly proficient estate planning attorney near you, engaging an ACTEC Fellow is a great choice.

All ACTEC Fellows have at least 10 years of experience in the active practice of probate and trust law or estate planning. Lawyers and law professors are elected to be Fellows based on their outstanding reputation, exceptional skill, and substantial contributions to the field by lecturing, writing, teaching and participating in bar activities.

While there are plenty of great estate planning attorneys out there who are not ACTEC Fellows, as a blanket recommendation, you can be confident that an ACTEC Fellow will be able to meet your unique needs.

You can find an ACTEC fellow near you using the ACTEC directory available at the following link:

Note: Just In Case Estates is not affiliated with ACTEC in any way. The American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC) neither sponsors nor endorses Just In Case Estates.


Just In Case Estates is an online service providing legal forms and information. We are not a law firm and we do not provide legal advice. If you need legal advice, please use our legal expert matching service to connect with a qualified, licensed estate planning attorney near you.