I’m excited to introduce our very first Meet A Dad, Joshua Ryden. Joshua is the Attorney and Owner of Horizon Law Firm. As a local Dad of 3, he takes a different and more personal approach towards Estate Planning. Joshua talks candidly about family life, local favorites, his career path, and why having an Estate Plan for your family is so important including designating assets, short-term/long-term guardianship as well as minimizing probate time. Learn how Joshua’s approach to help families protect their loved ones comes from his very own values and responsibilities as a Father himself.
How many kids do you have? I have three kids, a six year old daughter, 3 year old son, and 6 month old son.
What do you love about Peachtree City and surrounding areas? The people! Peachtree City is such a great place to live that it attracts people from all over the country and the world. Whenever I’m in a social setting and having casual conversation with new people, or even in line at the store, there’s a really good chance I’m going to talk to someone with a fascinating background. I’m here for the stories! And people in PTC have great ones.
What’s your favorite restaurant and/or place to shop in Peachtree City and/or surrounding areas? Given the choices here, that is hard to narrow down, but my wife and I are known to recommend people go to The Beirut. It’s a gem. We also love Palmer House, when we can get a table.
Tell us about your career? I started out practicing law with two large law firms in Atlanta for the first five years of my career. I represented financial institutions and mortgage investors in federal Bankruptcy Court. I learned so much in that time from several great practitioners, and enjoyed working in mortgage law. Over the years I also handled estate planning (wills, trusts, guardianship nominations, etc.) for family and friends. I also helped entrepreneurs with starting and protecting new businesses. The personal connection that came from serving clients in this sort of practice was really fulfilling, and I could see that I was providing people with actual peace of mind and guidance that they appreciated.
How did you decide on this Business? The more I came to enjoy helping families with estate planning, the more I realized I needed to make a shift in my practice area. As time went on though, at some point I realized that the “someday” of opening my own firm and working with families and small businesses would never come if I didn’t make it happen. So with my wife Brittany’s support, we made a number of changes over a year and a half. I then stepped down from my position at the firm in Atlanta and officially launched Horizon Law Firm, with an office in Newnan and Peachtree City.
You cover an interesting sector of Law that is so integral in protecting families and their loved ones. Can you elaborate on why this is so important?
Yes! As a father, it is my highest responsibility to love and protect my family. This motivates everything I do, and it pushes me to consider harsh realities, including what would happen to my family if something happened to me or my wife. While life insurance is thankfully available to help with financial provision for them if I were to pass away, it’s equally important that parents have legal planning in place that designates who should own their assets (through a Will), who can take temporary custody of their children (short term guardianship appointment) and who would care for their children long-term (guardian appointed in a Will). Additionally, there are steps that can be taken that will prevent much of a family’s estate from having to go through the probate process at a time when they are grieving. With estate planning, parents are able to set up structures designed to protect their loved ones and reduce conflict and confusion should anything happen to them. Fundamentally, it’s a powerful way to serve your family by setting up a plan that will benefit them if you pass away.
What services do you provide at Horizon Law Firm? I help people put together estate planning that keeps their loved ones out of court and out of conflict. This means we designate who is able to make decisions for them if they are incapacitated, who can control and/or receive their assets if they pass away, and who will care for their children if they were unable to. I also help small business owners and entrepreneurs set up new companies and protect assets of existing ones from ever increasing liability.
How does Horizon Law firm’s approach stand out from others? Two main ways: We specialize, and we are transparent. We specialize in estate planning and small business law, and as a result we have a deep understanding of the problems we solve, and can provide a lot of value to our clients. We don’t handle personal injury cases, or divorce cases, or criminal defense. Because of this, we aren’t generalists that only see a handful of situations like yours per year. You’re in good hands when you work with us. We are also transparent. We put a high priority on making sure clients understand their options, and are transparent in our flat fee based pricing for all services. We want to encourage open communication, and most of the time billing by the hour discourages clients from wanting to talk to their attorney. So everything we do, from setting up guardian nominations and wills to forming LLCs, involves giving clear explanations of what we can do to help and at what cost, before we ever send an invoice.
What is the best thing about your job? I love getting to work with families setting up plans that protect their loved ones. Seeing people feel genuinely proud and relieved is very rewarding. I feel very fortunate to work in an area of law that is trying to prevent problems and conflict from happening, rather than cleaning up the mess when conflict has broken out.
Advice or a Dad hack you would like to share? As for advice – I was told once by someone older and wiser than I was that when it comes to raising our kids, more is caught than taught. They see our priorities and values in our actions more than our words. I try to remind myself of that regularly. As for a hack – there is a company that makes a single handed bottle opener. It takes a couple tries at first, but it works. This means I can hold my six month old son in one arm and open a brew at the same time. God bless American ingenuity.
To learn more or to schedule a consultation with Joshua Ryden, visit www.horizonlawyer.com.