Board Certified, Estate Planning and Probate Law - Texas Board of Legal Specialization
Av Preeminent rated, Martindale Hubbell
The following describes the general range of fees the firm typically charges for the work described. Each client's circumstances and needs vary, however, and thus the fee for the work decided upon may vary. The services listed are representative of those frequently requested by clients and performed by the firm, and other non-listed services are, of course, available.
The notation "(F, HR)" following the description of the service indicates the typical fee basis (F = fixed only; HR = hourly only; F, HR = a combination of fixed and hourly fees). Where no amount is shown, the range is too broad to state a representative amount.
Fixed fees or the basis for computation of fees are always agreed upon by the client and firm in advance of the client incurring any obligation. Sample Engagement Letter.
Firm hourly rates (HR) currently range from $150-395 for attorney time, and from $45-150 for technical support staff time. Rates are subject to change from time to time under our standard engagement letter. Hourly fees are billed on a periodic basis, and are payable within 10 days of the statement date; if not paid within the time allowed, a 10% account processing charge may be charged. Alternate payment arrangements may sometimes be made by agreement prior to the time charges are incurred.
For representation in which fees are fixed, one-half of the fee is paid at the time the work is requested, and the balance is paid at the time of completion of the work agreed upon.
For representations involving substantial work based on hourly fees, the firm typically requires a non-refundable deposit in an amount equal to the estimated fees to be incurred during the first month since such an engagement requires setting aside the time expected to be needed for the agreed upon work. In addition, the firm may require additional deposits against fees (whether non-refundable or refundable) when we desire to assure sufficient resources to complete the work undertaken.
Non-tax dispositive planning (for estates having a total community and separate value of less than approximately $700,000-$900,000, including life insurance at face value) generally includes Wills with contingent trusts for minor or disabled beneficiaries, Durable Powers of Attorney, Health Care Directives, Medical Powers of Attorney, and other appropriate ancillary documents. Lifetime management planning and probate avoidance may be incorporated through the use of revocable living trusts. Funding of living trusts is in addition to the fees described, with work typically performed on an hourly basis.
|Single Person, single will||
|Married Couple, pair mirror wills||
|Single Person, single will/living trust||
|Married Couple, pair mirror wills/living trust||
Intermediate federal estate and gift tax and dispositive planning (for estates having a total community and separate value of more than approximately $900,000-$1,400,000, including life insurance at face value, without significant potential liability problems) generally includes Wills with contingent trusts for minor or disabled beneficiaries implementing marital deduction bypass planning. Gifts qualifying for the marital deduction may be made outright or in a QTIP trust. Durable Powers of Attorney, Health Care Directives, Medical Powers of Attorney and other appropriate ancillary documents are also typically included. Lifetime management planning and probate avoidance may be incorporated through the use of revocable living trusts. Generation skipping transfer tax planning may also be incorporated.
|Married Person, single will||1,800.00-2,200.00|
|Married Couple, pair mirror wills||2,200.00-2,700.00|
|Married Person, single will/living trust||2,500.00-3,200.00|
|Married Couple, pair mirror wills/living trust||2,900.00-3,600.00|
|Incorporated generation skipping transfer tax planning||add 2,000.00|
Advanced lifetime management, federal estate and gift tax, generation skipping transfer tax, and dispositive planning (for estates having a total community and separate value of more than approximately $1,400,000, including life insurance at face value, or significant potential liability or management and disposition problems) integrates one or more general or limited family partnerships, revocable living trusts, and wills with all supporting documentation, nominal funding, and funding instructions. Also included are other trusts customary to integrated planning, such as Heritage Trusts for children, irrevocable life insurance trusts, and special purpose trusts for a spouse or others. Durable Powers of Attorney, Health Care Directives, Medical Powers of Attorney and other appropriate ancillary documents are also typically included.
|For gross estates less than approximately $3 million, if work is done in Dallas (F, HR)||
|For gross estates greater than approximately $3 million, if work is done in Dallas||
|Each day required in a location other than Dallas, add (F, HR)||
|Asset and liability determination, valuation, plan funding||
|Annual implementation audit & retainer (F)||
|Implementation audit & corrective work, if not undertaken on an annual retainer basis||
|Marital Property Agreement (F, HR)||
|Irrevocable life insurance trust||
|Asset and liability determination and valuation||
|Estate planning gifts, sales, partitions, other transfers||
|U.S. Gift Tax Returns||
|Split-dollar agreements (F, HR)||
|Incorporation, including annual retainer for first year (F)||
|Annual retainer for entity maintenance, including preparation of required annual documents and minutes, and consultation regarding incidental questions arising in operation of small business with less than three equity interest owners (F)||
|General Partnership (F, HR)||
|Limited Partnership (F, HR)||
|Limited Liability Company (F, HR)||
|Business Control and Business Continuation Agreements (F, HR)||
|Business reorganizations and termination||
|General business representation||
|Business Sales and Acquisitions||
The fee for the settlement of an estate or trust varies considerably depending upon the extent of the estate planning prior to death, the size of the estate, and the complexity of the assets owned, and the dispositive, business, and estate tax issues involved.
Services for a client to whom the firm has provided estate planning services will often be somewhat less that for those for whom the client has not provided estate planning services.
Limited estate administration services:
|Required Texas court proceedings only (HR)||
|Federal Estate Tax Return preparation or review other than in conjunction with full service estate administration (HR)||
Full service estate administration, including the following services when the decedent dies with a will creating an independent administration:
Preparation of the application for probate of the will;
Arranging for the proof necessary to have the will admitted to probate;
Attending the hearing to have the will so admitted;
Preparation of the order admitting the will to probate;
Preparation and filing of the oath;
Assistance in day-to-day administrative tasks required by the estate including ascertaining and valuing estate property and obligations of estate;
Where appropriate and necessary, maintenance of financial books and records for the estate;
Assistance in obtaining life insurance proceeds;
Preparation and arranging for the publication of notice to creditors;
Preparation of the notice to secured creditors;
Preparation and filing of the statutory inventory, appraisement, and list of claims, and obtaining an order approving same;
Preparation and filing of the federal estate tax and state inheritance tax returns when required;
Settlement of federal estate tax and state inheritance tax liability, excluding dealings with the internal revenue service other than routine dealings with the examining attorney; and
Assistance in the transfer of title to all of the decedent's assets, including the funding of testamentary trusts.
3 1/2% of the gross estate less than $600,000; plus
4 1/2% of the gross estate between $600,000 and $1,500,000; plus
3 1/2% of the gross estate in excess of $1,500,000.
Gross estate means the total property of the decedent as defined
under federal estate tax law.
Full service estate administration with a corporate executor which assumes primary responsibility for record keeping, valuation, and federal estate tax compliance:
1 1/2% less than stated fee for individual executor.
The fee for other services, including matters to be settled by further proceedings or litigation HR
|Agreed Divorce, one party represented||
|Litigated Divorce, both parties represented||
Expenses and costs are not included in the fees quoted in this schedule. The firm does not charge for long distance telephone and incidental photocopying.
Chargeable expenses include: delivery and courier service, substantial photocopying, filing fees, and travel and lodging (if an over-night trip is required). A deposit against expenses is typically required in the amount of the expected expenses, or expenses may be paid directly.
Although the firm attempts to obtain travel and lodging at
a reasonable cost, such bookings are in the discretion of the
firm and dependent upon the schedule of those performing services.
Authorization for business class or better is required international
travel. The typical per diem cost is $300.00-500.00 (in addition
to any fees incurred) for costs other than travel.
Filing fees for common transactions currently include:
|Filing Fee for Probate, Dallas County||
|Filing fee for Limited Partnership Certificate||
|Filing fee for Articles of Incorporation||