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Solicitor’s Negligence in Estates and Trusts Context – No. 2: Will and Estate Planning Error Reduction

In this blog we share with you some LawPRO statistics on common Solicitor errors in estates. eStatePlanner, a web based application developed by Jordan Atin of Hull & Hull, was designed to streamline the estate planning process for advisors and their clients, and can help change these statistics around. Jordan has shared with us some Key Error Reduction Features of eStatePlanner.

LawPro has a seen a dramatic increase in the number of claims relating to will and estate planning.

Inadequate Investigation is the number one cause of claim.

Comprehensive interactive questionnaire that clients can complete online.  These include much more than just personal information and asset data.  e-State prompts inquiring into special circumstances such as a family member’s estrangement, disability, dependant support indicia and citizenship.

While working on the plan, the lawyer is prompted by the client’s specific circumstances and instructions to canvass additional relevant issues, such as additional capacity inquiries, foreign law issues, prior wills, family law issues, possibility of future children and other class members and many others.

Communication issues are the second more common cause of claims.

e-State was created for the very purpose of enhancing communication and understanding for our clients.   Planning using e-State is a visual experience.  Assets are graphically represented and the lawyer can literally show the client the instructions by dragging and dropping assets to illustration distributions.  The client can see, in real time, the impact of decisions based on income tax, probate tax and the client’s specific assets.    The results of the plan are reduced to graphics so that the lawyer can be sure that the client fully understands the plan.   Before the meeting is over, the client receives a visual and text summary of their plan that is easy to follow and understand.

Errors of Law rank 3rd on the list of causes.

e-State was conceived and created by Law Society Certified Specialists.   Leveraging their experience as drafters and LawPro counsel, e-State incorporates contextual advice for the lawyer. Things that we had to remember to remember are automatically prompting us.  Advisor Insights provide warnings to the lawyer about errors in the plan, missing information, legal and tax issues resulting from the instructions and ways to reduce liability through waivers or other advice.

Time Management and Clerical are also significant claim causes.

Highly comprehensive and up to date precedents Wills and Powers of Attorney are generated automatically in Word format with a click of a button.  Names are never misspelled, genders are never mixed up and paragraph references are always accurate.  Affidavits of Execution and Reporting Letters are also automatically generated.   You can have drafts ready in a matter of minutes.


This paper is intended for the purposes of providing information only and is to be used only for the purposes of guidance. This paper is not intended to be relied upon as the giving of legal advice and does not purport to be exhaustive.


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