After getting a legal degree, there are several opportunities to specialize in a certain subject. You may have heard of estate planning and considered a career as an estate planning attorney. On the other hand, what precisely does it imply, and how does one go about becoming one? This thorough guide will help you learn about estate planning research resources and other tools that you should be aware of.

How Do Estate Lawyers Work?

Estate planning attorneys, often known as estate lawyers, are legal experts that help people plan for their assets if they become disabled or die. To succeed in this job, you must have a high level of particular competence. An effective estate lawyer will be familiar with the rules that govern estate planning in their state or territory, but they will also need to consider their client’s specific circumstances and assets in order to devise a strategy that is tailored to their specific needs.

It is a challenging profession that may need a wide range of responsibilities and duties to be accomplished everyday. Estate planning attorneys may be able to help with the following tasks:

  • preparing taxes and distributing assets to family members.
  • Making gifts to charitable organizations.
  • selecting a plan for permanent life insurance.
  • Developing a wealth-management approach
  • Developing a thorough plan for the client’s assets to aid dependents in avoiding probate court following the client’s death, as well as preparing and collecting all of the required documentation
  • The procedure of doing property appraisals.
  • Managing and maintaining track of all assets
  • Developing a debt payback strategy.
  • Providing kids with long-term guardianship and power of attorney
  • Submitting all documentation to the court.

If You Want to Become an Estate Planning Attorney, Do You Need to Be Certified?

Officially, the response is no. Working as an attorney specialized in estate planning does not need certification. A legal degree will help you perform estate planning services more effectively. Certification, on the other hand, not only grants you access to vital supplementary information, but it also increases your reputation in the eyes of potential consumers.

There are several options for becoming a qualified estate planning attorney. Because each of them provides a distinct set of benefits, it is up to you to decide which one is best for your needs and goals. The options for certification include the following:

CTEP, which stands for Chartered Trust and Estate Planner, refers to someone who has achieved the degree of certification required to give services to high-income clients. The Global Academy of Finance & Management is the body in charge of providing certifications and defining qualification standards. This includes completing an undergraduate or graduate degree program in accounting, law, finance, financial planning, or tax services at an approved university. Furthermore, in order to become a Certified Trusted Estate Planner (CTEP), individuals must demonstrate a specific degree of ability in estate planning and have at least three years of experience working in the industry. When working with wealthy individuals, CTEPs usually aid with trust formation, asset division, investment account administration, and corporate asset organization.

Accredited Estate Planner (AEP) — The National Association of Estate Planners & Councils certifies persons who have earned the Accredited Estate Planner title. To earn the certification, you must have a degree in law or accountancy and at least five years of estate planning experience. As with CTEP certification, AEP certification requires a predefined number of years of ongoing study. Accredited Estate Planners work with individuals to organize their estates in a broader sense; this qualification displays a unique experience in estate planning, whether for the rich or the middle class.

The American Bankers Association is the body that grants Certified Trust and Fiduciary Advisor (CTFA) accreditation to its members. Three years of professional experience, completion of a special education course, and passing the related test are all required.

Furthermore, there are additional estate planning-related certifications that an attorney may find useful. These credentials include accreditation in finance, taxation, and asset management.

How to Become an Attorney Specializing in Estate Planning

As previously said, there are several ways for becoming an estate planning attorney. Even if you have already begun your degree, there are several methods to meet your criteria for earning experience and certifications in order to specialize in estate planning. In contrast, the bulk of people follow a predictable pattern.

Acquire Your Degree

Naturally, the first thing you should do is work toward completing your college education. It might be in law, finance, accounting, or a related profession.

Gain Experience With Professionals

Once you’ve finished your studies, apply to an estate planning attorney for an internship or entry-level career.

Enroll in Law School.

One must first enroll in law school before taking the LSAT. This procedure takes several years.

Get Beyond the Bar

To become a lawyer, you must pass the bar test. Following completion, you will be legally permitted to work in the subject of estate planning; nevertheless, it is always advisable to further your education.

Attempt to Get Uncommon Certifications

You may now seek a specialist estate planning certification, such as the CTEP, AEP, or CTFA, to further your knowledge in this area.

A positive piece of information is that there are several internet resources available to attorneys who want to expand their knowledge. Websites like CEB allow you to enhance your talents or study for certification.

Those interested in becoming an estate planning attorney can benefit from the following additional resources:

Estate law is a demanding career that necessitates a high level of specialized knowledge and expertise. To give proof for this, it is generally advantageous to have expertise or certifications in accounting, business, or tax law.

This does not always need the completion of another degree. However, to demonstrate that you have the necessary experience to support your customers, you may choose to enroll in specialized programs or obtain one of the right certifications.

Estate attorneys typically work with high-profile individuals, investors, or those with substantial money. As a result, many estate law firms combine with additional services, such as wealth management, accounting, financial advisors, or trust and investment experts. It goes without saying that these are other areas of study you might follow while studying to become an estate lawyer.

Legal Resources for Students

To become an estate planning attorney, you must continue your education. CEB is the resource you need whether you want to expand your knowledge, prepare for certification, or meet the continuous learning criteria required by your program. Since 1947, we have been meeting the continuing education needs of California attorneys. CEB is here to help California attorneys become more informed and provide better service to their clients by offering a range of tools such as online courses, law books, and extensive databases. Click here to visit our website today to discover more about the resources that CEB offers!