Estate Administration – Fees and Costs

How Fees and Costs are Determined

Estate administration fees and costs, and exactly what services are covered by those fees, are entirely dependent on the asset composition of the decedent’s estate and the documents governing the disposition of the decedent’s assets. Arizona Estate & Trust Law’s fees are determined by the time spent on a client’s behalf, the skill level required to provide the services, and the responsibilities assumed. For most legal services fees are either a fixed fee or a minimum-maximum fee. If the nature of the work makes a fixed-fee or an accurate minimum-maximum fee difficult to determine in advance, the work is done on a quoted hourly basis. A written confirmation of the fee arrangement and work to be done is furnished to the client before any work is begun on a client’s behalf.

Arizona Estate & Trust believes clients should know in advance what a probate administration of the post-death administration of a decedent’s trust will cost. Therefore, Arizona Estate & Trust Law is only able to provide fee quotes following an extensive initial office consultation with those persons designated to carry out the decedent’s final wishes. This extended initial conference is necessary to thoroughly evaluate the decedent’s estate situation. It determines exactly what steps will have to be undertaken to insure the decedent’s assets are distributed to his or her beneficiaries as promptly as possible and in a tax-efficient manner. It is also vital that the prospective client knows exactly what services will be provided for the quoted fee.

An initial consultation with Arizona Estate & Trust Law concerning the administration of a decedent’s estate typically lasts several hours and costs $250. At the end of the consultation period, a fee can usually be quoted to the client. The only time a fixed-fee cannot be quoted is when it is immediately apparent that the administration proceedings may be contested or involve potential litigation. In that situation an appropriate hourly fee is quoted along with an estimated range of costs. If the client chooses to hire Arizona Estate & Trust Law the initial consultation fee is deducted from the quoted fee.

Additional Estate Planning Information
For comprehensive general information on various estate planning and administration topics visit American Bar Association - Estate Planning FAQs

For information on Wills and Trusts visit Understanding Wills and Trusts - Arizona Bar Association