DiChello said it is up to the financial advisor, who should have a close relationship with a client, to stay on top of the situation to make sure all decisions are made and plans are spelled out in detail.

“Celebrities teach us a lesson, but everyday people get themselves into litigation, too. I’ve dealt with estates of less than a half million dollars that end up in litigation,” she added. “For instance, interests in businesses and real estate come into question or people do not align their beneficiaries or payable-on-death arrangements with their wills. They need to make sure those forms are not disrupting their estate plans.

“Others think they can draft their own wills,” DiChello said. “You wouldn’t pull your own tooth. You would go to a dentist. The same is true of an estate plan. It needs to be drafted with exactness and with the intentions spelled out.”

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