One of the challenges that we have as professionals is motivating our clients to do their estate planning.

As financial planners, you’ve seen the financial and emotional toll that it can take on families when the proper planning isn’t done right. Estate planning goes hand-in-hand with retirement planning, investing, life insurance, and more. In spite of this, studies show us that about two-thirds of adult American don’t even have a simple will.

You can educate clients and prospects about the proper estate planning and how it can help them, their families, and their assets, which they worked so hard to accumulate throughout their lifetime. The fact of the matter remains, however, that many clients will have excuses to push their legal planning to the back burner.

You’ve probably heard your clients say that they’ve been too busy with their kids, jobs or aging parents to take care of their estate planning. Others may be uncomfortable with the topic of dying, have uncooperative spouses, or simply have difficulty making decisions about who will be their trustees or beneficiaries.  Whatever the reasons, procrastination is common when it comes to clients doing the proper estate planning.

To overcome procrastination and transform the topic of estate planning into something people would be comfortable discussing, we wrote Trial & Heirs: Famous Fortune Fights! Now, our book has been made into a television special: "Trial & Heirs: Protect Your Family Fortune!"

The goal of the show is to help families protect their "fortunes" -- whether large or modest -- with good estate planning. Since clients are often reluctant to discuss will and trusts, we use high-profile celebrity stories, like Sonny Bono, Marlon Brando, Princess Diana, Michael Jackson and James Brown, to educate and engage the audience and viewers.  With each celebrity story, we share a tip to protect your client's family fortune. 

To highlight the emotional toll that the improper planning takes on a family, our show includes an interview with Ray Charles Robinson, Jr., the son of the late Ray Charles. Ray shared some touching stories about his famous father as well as the private pain that his father’s estate caused his family. Ray’s full interview includes some never-before-told stories.

The TV Special will air on PBS affiliates across the country and help raise money to support the wonderful cause of public television, which needs pledge donations now more than ever. With different pledge amounts, viewers can receive the DVD of the show with bonus features. These include “What to do After the Funeral is Over”, “Special Estate Planning Circumstances:  Special Needs Planning, Long-Term Care Planning and Estate Taxes”, “What to Do if You're in a Family Fight”, and more. The DVD also has a bonus feature of our full interview with Ray Charles, Jr. 

Other pledge items include a copy of our book Trial & Heirs; and our exclusive Estate Planning Organizer to help your clients keep their financial and legal affairs organized.

We hope that you can join us for the exciting premiere of Trial & Heirs: Protect Your Family Fortune! Our show will premiere on August 9th at 8 p.m. EST on PBS (in Michigan) and internationally via a live online broadcast at so that everyone will have an opportunity to view the premiere. In November and December, the show will air on PBS affiliates throughout the country. 

To learn more about the show, and how it can help both you and your clients, you can visit


By Danielle and Andy Mayoras, co-authors of Trial & Heirs: Famous Fortune Fights!, husband-and-wife legacy expert attorneys, and hosts of the national TV special, Trial & Heirs:  Protect Your Family Fortune! The charismatic duo has appeared on the Rachael Ray Show, Forbes, ABC’s Live Well Network, and FOX and NBC affiliates.  They’ve lent their expertise and analysis to hundreds of media sources, including The Associated Press, Los Angeles Times, The Huffington Post, Kiplinger, and The Washington Post, among many others.  Danielle and Andy delight audiences nationwide with highly entertaining and informative presentations, dishing the dirt on celebrity estate battles while dispensing important legal information to help people avoid family fights among their heirs.

For the latest celebrity and high-profile cases, with tips to protect yourself, your loved ones, and your clients, subscribe to The Trial and Heirs Update at