How To Prepare For Your Meeting With A Probate Attorney

Are you getting ready to meet with an Orlando probate attorney for the first time? This first meeting can seem rather intimidating. After all, you’re discussing the property division of a deceased individual. It’s not light conservation by any means. However, if you are the executor of a will, meeting with a probate attorney is the best way to get the process moving forward so family members can gain access to their inheritance and you can fulfill your duty.


Prior to meeting with the attorney, you may be asked to fill out a questionnaire. This will go over your relationship to the deceased and he or she may ask you questions about your legal authority to oversee the division of property. If you’re required to fill out a questionnaire, take your time and make sure you answer all the questions to the best of your ability.


When you meet with the probate attorney, you will need to bring certain documents with you to the meeting. These documents should be listed on the questionnaire or the attorney’s staff may verbally tell you which documents the attorney will need to see. Requested documentation usually includes copies of the following information:

• Trusts or wills of the deceased
• Deeds to all real property
• Life insurance policies
• Gift tax returns, if applicable
• Trust agreements between husbands and wives if the spouse is the beneficiary
• Public benefit statements for government programs like Medicaid or Social Security

Prepare Your Own Questions

If you’ve never been part of the probate process, you are certain to have many questions. When you meet with the probate lawyer for the first time, it is in essence an interview. You’re trying to gauge just how well this individual will be able to represent the interests of the estate you’re in charge of allocating to the deceased dependents based on his or her final wishes. The following examples are questions that you may want to ask of the attorney you are meeting with:

• How many cases similar to yours has the attorney handled? Not all probate cases are the same. If the estate is rather large or you expect resistance from certain individuals unhappy with the way the inheritance was divided, you’ll want to make sure your attorney has the expertise to handle this situation.

• Are there any foreseeable problems with your probate case? Attorneys are not psychic. However, legal professionals with the right amount of experience should be able to identify potential problems from the documents you show them and the way you answer their questions.

• Will the attorney you’re meeting with be the presiding attorney over the case or will it be handed to another legal professional in the office? If another attorney will be handling the majority of the case, make sure you take the time to meet him or her to ensure that you feel comfortable with his or her background and ability to handle the case.

• How long do you expect the case to take? Some probate cases are over and done with rather quickly, while others involve a lengthy process. Again, attorneys are not psychic, but they should be able to estimate a timeline based on the information you provide.

• How does the attorney get paid for his or her services? As the executor of the will, you should not be expected to pay out of pocket for these services. Probate attorneys usually take a percentage from the estate. Make sure you are comfortable with the percentage you are quoted.

These are just a few examples of the kinds of questions you’ll want to prepare ahead of time before you meet with the Orlando probate attorney of your choice.

5 Qualities Of A Successful Legal Nurse Consultant

A legal nurse consultant can be hired on a case-by-case basis or full-time to help attorneys prepare for a medical case. With medical terminology involved in the case, it can be difficult to understand the issue and what is needed to research and check to help the client. That is why many firms and attorneys bring on a consultant to help with the case. When thinking about the tasks at hand, here are 5 qualities that are needed to be a successful consultant:

1. Licensed Register Nurse

When you’re looking for someone to hire, you want to find someone who is currently licensed as a nurse. Make sure that the individual is a registered nurse with at least 5 years of experience. This tells you that he or she will have the training and experience needed to be successful advising about medical matters.

2. Legal Training

Although you don’t have to be certified to work as a legal consultant, it would be better to find someone who has completed the necessary training to become certified as a legal consultant. He or she will be more prepared to take on the casework that attorneys have for them. There are several companies that offer certification programs to ensure that consultants will have the information they need to be successful.

3. Great Communication Skills

Great oral and written communication skills are important to be successful. A consultant is often the liaison between attorneys and clients, defendants, and healthcare providers. He or she should be able to explain the information and discuss the matters of the case. The consultant will also need to be able to effectively explain medical concepts to attorneys in a way that will help them understand and competently speak about it in court and with others.

4. Extremely Resourceful

The consultant will be required to do a lot of research to help prepare the case. He or she will need to be resourceful to locate relevant information, determine which data will affect the case, and then obtain hard copies for attorneys to use in court as evidence. The consultant needs to be persistent when searching out important information that can be absolutely vital to the case if he or she hopes to help the attorneys. Having someone who can be resourceful will ensure that the consultant will work hard to find the information that can make or break the case.

5. Highly Organized

With the amount of medical records, books, and other documents that need to be scanned for information that can impact the case, it becomes necessary for the consultant to be someone who is highly organized. As he or she takes notes and records important data, the consultant should have a system to keep everything organized and easily accessible. The information should be outlined in a logical way that will make it easy to explain to attorneys about what it means and how it could impact the case. Then, the attorney can use all of the notes to determine how to prepare the case and what steps should be taken moving forward.

Whether you’re looking to hire a legal nurse consultant for your next case or you’re a nurse looking for a new career path, you’ll find that these 5 qualities are vital to ensure success. When you have the proper licensing and education as a registered nurse, certification for legal consulting, great communication skills, resourcefulness, and organization skills, the tasks of researching for the case, speaking with clients and healthcare providers, prepping attorneys, preparing evidence, and completing other tasks for the case will be completed in an exceptional manner that can impact the success of the case.

How New Mexico Dui Laws Can Affect You

Being arrested for a DWI in the state of New Mexico is not only an embarrassing situation to find yourself in, but it is also one that carries heavy penalties. Even if you are facing your first DWI offense, you will pay significantly for your crime. Your best line of defense is hiring a qualified drunk driving attorney to help you defend your case and protect your right to drive.

For a first New Mexico DWI offense, you will spend up to 90 days in jail. The fines for this offense can be as high as $500. On top of that, you will pay around $200 in court costs. You will also be asked to attend a victim impact panel, serve probation (sometimes in place of jail time), and attend DWI school. Optional alcohol screening, counseling, and community service are possible. The fees for all of these potential penalties range close to $150.

After your DWI arrest, you need to request a hearing with the MVD to try to fight to keep your license. If you do not request the hearing, your license will be revoked on the 20th day after your arrest, and you will not have it for 90 days. Before you can get it back, you must show proof of attending DWI school and the alcohol screening. You may be able to get a temporary license 30 days after the revocation begins.

These penalties are strict, because New Mexico takes drunk driving seriously. The best way to avoid them is to designate a driver. If you are caught driving under the influence, hire a lawyer to help you defend yourself.

Do You Really Need A Bankruptcy Attorney

A debtor who is considering bankruptcy is in an interesting dilemma. The fact that he is filing bankruptcy indicates that he has no money. However, in order to file bankruptcy as successfully as possible, he should hire an attorney, and attorneys are not cheap. In fact, some attorneys actually increase their rates when dealing with bankruptcy cases. While you will have to pay an attorney if you find yourself in this situation, these tips will help you find one that is more affordable.

If you are filing Chapter 13 bankruptcy, find an attorney who is willing to add his charges to the bankruptcy case. In this way, you will pay him through the repayment plan under your Chapter 13 bankruptcy protection. You will not have to pay out of pocket as you being the bankruptcy process. Just make sure you know what the charges are before you begin the process.

Remember that most attorneys offer free consultations in an attempt to get your business. Take advantage of this to learn all you can about the bankruptcy process. Also, look for reduced fee lawyer services, which are often available to certain demographics. For instance, some lawyers will work at a reduced rate for elderly people who are facing bankruptcy due to predatory lenders. Others do some pro bono bankruptcy work to help the public image of the firm. If you can find one of these lawyers, use the services.

Since bankruptcy is not an extremely complicated process as far as legal processes go, you may not need a lawyer for the entire process. See if you can hire what is called “limited scope legal representation.” This is a situation where you hire the lawyer to represent you for only part of the process. This is not available in all states, but if it is an option in yours, then take advantage of it. Let the lawyer help you with the document preparation, but handle the court appearances on your own. You may only have to pay a few hundred dollars for this service.

Remember, you really do need legal advice when filing for bankruptcy. For the non-lawyers among us, it is a complicated process, and any mistakes could make you look as though you are guilty of fraud, a situation you do not want to be in. However, you do not have to pay a lawyer to hold your hand through the whole process. There are affordable options out there to help you get the assistance you need, without hurting your financial situation any further.

How To Prepare For Your Meeting With A Probate Attorney

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