In effort to be as transparent and as informative as possible, here are some the most frequently asked questions I get from clients and prospective clients.
1. Who are your typical clients?
My typical clients tend to be younger families with minor children. Perhaps it is because working parents are busy and want to work with an attorney who is flexible enough to work with their schedule for meetings and communications. But I do work with all types of clients. I have had single clients with their own businesses. I have elderly clients as well. I have also had clients who simply need a temporary medical power of attorney for parents going on vacation and leaving minor children with a babysitter. I have had clients who simply need a Durable Power of Attorney and Living Will and Patient Advocate Designation for their child who is starting college.
I want to work with you and establish a long-term relationship with you, but if I feel that I can’t meet your needs or if you feel that you need a different type of attorney with a different type of expertise, I won’t hesitate to give you several referrals. I have a large network of estate planning attorneys business attorneys, and financial advisors that I would be willing to suggest. You need to be 100% comfortable with whomever you work with for your estate planning and wealth management needs and goals
2. What are your fees?
Every estate planning client is different and it all depends on whether you are married or single and whether you will need a Joint Trust or separate Trusts.
I will always give you a proposed fee in the beginning once I review your client information and asset worksheet, from which I can get a better sense of what your estate planning needs will be.
If you don’t want a full estate plan – perhaps you just need a Living Will and Patient Advocate Designation, for example, – I will let you know right away what the cost would be.
Perhaps you don’t need any documents, but you have specific legal questions that you need me to guide you on, I may charge by the hour depending on the nature of the questions and the necessary research. If I do charge by the hour, I will cap the fees (meaning that if I do spend more time on your matter than I anticipated would be necessary, you would not pay more than what I capped the fee at).
3. How do I pay you?
When you see an invoice in your online account, you will then be able to pay via credit card or ACH online. Note that if you pay via credit card, there is a 3% charge that comes out of the fee on my end; therefore, I prefer you to pay via ACH, but whatever you are most comfortable with. While I charge flat fees, we can set up your online payments to be paid in installments if you prefer.
(If you prefer to mail me a check, the check should be made payable to “Hayley E. Rohn, PLLC” and I will give you a mailing address, but it is much easier for you to pay online.)
4. What is it like to communicate and work with me virtually or remotely?
How we communicate and collaborate are up to you. After I receive your client information and asset information worksheet, we can schedule a video conference. Personally, I enjoy video conferences in the beginning of our relationship because while I can’t be in Michigan physically, the face-to-face communication helps establish a trusted relationship and allow us to discuss any questions you have more efficiently. However, many clients simply prefer to communicate only via email which is totally fine but in some cases, I may insist on a video conference to ensure a client is mentally competent.
I am actually hearing impaired and read lips well so email and video conferences seem to work best for everyone.
5. What are the main advantages of working with me as a virtual lawyer?
Lower overhead costs = lower fees.
You get a flowchart of your proposed estate plan structure along with a proposed fee before you retain me.
You have the ability to review your draft estate planning documents and make changes, if any, before you pay me.
You are free to reach me with any questions at any time you want – I do not bill by the hour.
6. What are the main disadvantages of working with me as a virtual lawyer?
One main disadvantage will have to arrange for your own witnesses and notaries when your documents are ready to be signed. However, I can help you find a mobile notary to possibly come to your house to notarize. I will always give you signing instructions. On the other hand, the signings would normally have been a part of my fees if I were to help you with signing and notarizing so that is one reason why your fees are comparably lower.
Because of the web-based nature of my firm, at this time, I do not handle estate administration, probate administration, or trust administration matters. However, I will help you find the right person should you need probate or trust administration help.
7. Where did you work before starting your own firm?
I started out working at Barris, Sott, Denn, & Driker PLLC in Detroit for over three years. It was there that I worked with several highly respected and wonderful attorneys who were instrumental to my training as an attorney. Then, I went to Couzens, Lansky, Fealk, Ellis, Roeder & Lazar, PC in Farmington Hills for another three years where I continued practicing in estate planning until I shifted gears and went to work at Comerica Bank downtown Ann Arbor as a Trust Administrator in its Charitable Advisory Group until my family had to relocate to Texas for my husband’s job as Senior Counsel at Toyota.
Any other questions? Do not hesitate to contact me!