At CCA, we talk about the importance of your team, so this week, we asked Rachel Hicks, one of our valued team members at Family Estate Planning Law Group, to share her experience with attending the Foundations WorkshopTM and working with other firms:
As a team member of Family Estate Planning Law Group, attending the Foundations WorkshopTM was helpful to me in numerous ways. My exposure to estate planning had been solely the systems and practices of our firm, the same systems and practices that are taught to firms around the country through the Client Care Academy. Back at our January Foundations WorkshopTM, I began to see firsthand just how unique and cutting edge my every day work is in the estate planning field.
An example of this was regarding what we call our Family Care Meeting™. At our firm, as a part of our Client Care Program, we encourage clients to have at least one Family Care Meeting™ when they can as part of the estate planning process. The purpose of a meeting like this, is to gather our clients’ ‘team’ of people, typically family members, to discuss their roles in the plan. We only discuss what the client is comfortable disclosing. We often leave out specific values of assets and inheritances, etc. We have seen great success from these meetings, as it gives our client the chance to explain to their family members exactly what their wishes are, and the role that they have to play, while also having an attorney in the room to answer questions. It helps families build trusting relationships with us when we can meet, easing the process when they will one day have to actually implement the plan with us alongside them.
The concept of this meeting always seemed to be an obvious idea to me, however when it was brought up at our Foundations WorkshopTM, the reactions of the other firms in the room was very surprising. Many of them had the most questions to ask about this meeting, it seemed to be some kind of revelation.
“What about confidentiality issues?”
“We do not disclose anything the client doesn’t wish us to disclose.”
“What if family members live out of state? Do these meeting usually work out, logistically?”
“We can have out of state family members video chat or call in, and actually most of the time we’ve seen families of clients try their best to be there, most people are on board and believe it to have value”.
It went on like this for a while.
Not only does this meeting make the entire process more streamlined, but it gives attorneys an opportunity to build trusting relationships with many more people in the client’s circle. While it may have seemed like a no brainer to me, these kind of lessons are truly groundbreaking in our field, and there were plenty more moments like this one. At Client Care Academy, we’re not trying to promote a product that is totally out in left field - we’ve simply done all the trial and error with ideas that make sense, so you don’t have to.
Let us share the ideas that have made us and so many other firms successful, with you.
To learn more about Client Care Academy, our Foundations WorkshopTM, and other workshop offerings for newcomers and alum, email our Program Coordinator, Megan Davitt, today!