Hull & Hull announces $1M seed funding to expand digital estate planner eState interprovincially

New investors include founders of DivorceMate and Hubdoc

Hull & Hull announces $1M seed funding to expand digital estate planner eState interprovincially
Jordan Atin is the co-creator of eState Planner.

eState Planner, the digital estate-law tool created by Ontario law firm Hull & Hull LLP, has announced a $1 million seed round and plans to use the investment to accelerate its development for use in other provinces.

Tech founders Mark Harris, Jamie McDonald, and Jamie Shulman are among the new investors. Harris is the creator of DivorceMate, a family-law software acquired last October by the Leap Group. Shulman and McDonald are behind Hubdoc, an app for book-keeping automation, which they sold for $100 million to New Zealand cloud-accounting company Xero in 2018. Also joining as an investor is Owen Duckman, managing director of the Family Office at Wittington Investments.

“It’s an endorsement, I think, of the need for technology in the estate planning space,” says Jordan Atin, co-creator of eState Planner and a certified specialized in estates and trusts law at Hull & Hull. “eState was developed by lawyers… and it’s for lawyers. We’re not just a software company.”

“We’re looking on improving the client experience for lawyers and the lawyers’ experience with their clients.”

Atin and Ian Hull launched eState Planner in 2019. Now, between 350 and 400 law firms use it in Ontario. Expanding to other provinces was always the goal, and a “major” reason they raised the money was to expedite that process, says Atin. Another reason was to allow for customizable wills. Currently, users draft on Hull and Hull’s preferred will format. eState Planner is building the ability to customize wills to look as though a lawyer had produced them manually while using the same technology to ensure it is drafted properly and comprehensively, he says. Atin says the customizability will be ready by the end of 2022.

eState Planner will also use the funding to develop a version for non-lawyer estate planners, so they can collaborate and plan wills and powers of attorney with lawyers who are doing the drafting.

eState Planner digitizes the process where a lawyer meets with a client, collects data on their family and assets, devises a plan and prepares documents, says Atin. The tool also serves as a “second set of eyes” by showing the client and lawyer the impact of certain decisions by constantly analyzing the data and producing reminders, such as planning opportunities and tax ramifications, he says. eState Planner generates wills, powers of attorney and reporting letters based on the data entered into the software.

“It’s a much safer way of drafting because you don’t make spelling mistakes, and you don’t forget to put clauses in because eState is able to look at all of the data and make sure that you’re doing it correctly,” says Atin.

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