You can’t take it with you when you go. We’ve all heard that phrase. You work your entire life to build financial stability with your real estate, bank accounts, investments, insurance policies, and personal possessions, which means that everything you worked for needs a place to go upon your death. If you are like most Americans, you want to have control over the fate of your life’s work, and you want to see it all passed down into the hands of the people that you love the most. Of course, you want that to happen with the least amount of taxes and legal fees leached from your legacy. In order to make all of that possible, you need an estate plan. Don’t put it off any longer; make 2017 the year of the estate plan.
The Best Time is NOW
Estate planning isn’t taught in school, and it isn’t emphasized in the media, so most young families don’t realize it should be a priority. In truth, estate planning is a wise decision for people of any age, whether 27 or 71. The tricky thing about death is that it can rarely be predicted, so you want to know you have prepared for an orderly and productive process after you pass.
Components of Estate Planning
Estate planning isn’t just one document, but rather a collection of legal preparations that all fall under the umbrella of estate planning. You don’t need to feel overwhelmed and complete everything at once. If you are young, begin with a will, term life insurance, and powers of attorney for your assets and health care decisions. You can then work with your estate planning lawyer to gradually move forward with other elements as your financial situation becomes more complex.
A complete estate plan will include a will, a living trust to hold your property, a living will and health care surrogate, a financial power of attorney, beneficiary selections, life insurance, estate tax preparations, funds to cover funeral expenses, business protections, document storage, and any final funeral arrangement wishes.