Create core estate planning documents on-demand with Vanilla Document Builder
Wealth advisors can now help clients with document creation and on-going estate advice
At Vanilla, we believe it’s every wealth advisor’s job to ensure that their clients have an estate plan that matches their values and goals. But more often than not, clients have out-of-date estate planning documents or no documents at all. In fact, according to a 2023 Wills and Estate Planning Study, while 64% of Americans think having a will is important, only 34% of Americans have an estate plan. When asked why they don’t have those basic documents in place, complexity and time required to hire an estate lawyer are what most people cite as the cause of their delay.
In order to address this problem, we’re proud to announce the return of our on-demand document creation platform, Vanilla Document Builder, a self-serve experience integrated directly into the Vanilla Estate Advisory Platform. Vanilla Document Builder modernizes the creation of clients’ most important estate documents, ensuring they can protect their legacy without being overwhelmed by complexity.
With Document Builder, advisors can invite their clients to create core estate planning documents on-demand, and then reflect that plan inside Vanilla, creating a fully integrated view of their clients’ estates. By offering an intuitive, simple, and stress-free way to create new documents, advisors can help close one of the biggest gaps in their clients total wealth plan.
“Modern wealth advisors need a complete platform for practicing Estate Advisory,” said Gene Farrell, CEO of Vanilla. “By combining the power of our platform to visualize and strategize estate plans with the ability for clients to get and execute documents enables advisors to deliver an end-to-end advisory experience.”
Intuitive, self-guided document creation
Using Vanilla’s simple and modern experience, clients can initially create a Pour-over Will, Revocable Trust, Health Care Directive, Power of Attorney, and a Certification of Trust. Documents for more complex estates will be added in the future.
Advisors simply invite their clients to fill out a self-guided questionnaire curated by leading estate and trust experts. The document templates have been created in partnership with Accelerant, one of the leading law firms in the country and reviewed and approved by attorneys in local jurisdictions.
Vanilla then produces their core estate planning documents, without the need for attorney engagement. Along the way, the Vanilla interface visualizes key concepts and offers help content to enable the client to make decisions with ease and confidence. Advisors can even track their client’s progress as they build core documents directly inside Vanilla. Once the process is complete, the finalized documents are printed and shipped directly to the client, ready to be executed.
Most importantly for the advisor and client, the estate planning details seamlessly integrate with their client profile, making Vanilla a truly dynamic, end-to-end platform. All of the visualizations, diagrams, waterfalls and balance sheet instantly populate based on the client documents. Once the plan is created, the client’s assets flow through their plan, providing the advisor with an understanding of their goals now and in the future.
Modernizing estate advisory for now and the future
Document creation is more than just a “one-and-done” activity, and so is estate planning. Truly impactful estate advisory is a relationship that results in a living, breathing representation of how a person’s life’s work will impact the people and causes they care most about, and help them maximize that impact. From the creation of those first core documents, to updates as life circumstances change, we’re proud to add Document Builder to the Vanilla Estate Advisory Platform so advisors can help clients think expansively about the true impact of their legacy.
When is Vanilla Document Builder available?
Document Builder will be rolling out later this year — sign up today to join the waitlist and be among the first to offer this valuable product to your clients.
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