“When talking about money and how it works in our lives, we often refer to the difference between wants and needs. The challenge being that when someone really wants something it can start to feel like a need.”
Estate planning is a need, but too often it gets moved down to the list for tomorrow.
There are many reasons people put off estate planning, like discussing death and dying. The (Memphis TN) Daily News recently published an article, entitled “Estate Planning – It’s a Need,” that explained how one person might be a great choice for guardian, trustee, power of attorney or executor. However, what if when the time comes they’ve moved or don’t want the responsibility. What does your family do then?
What if a person named in the will needs to be removed later? What if estate laws change or your circumstances change and there’s a better option?
There will always be changes in our lives. We may live to see our children grow to be adults when they no longer need a guardian. Then again, about that time our parents will age and may need a guardian. We switch jobs, get promoted or get laid off. Investments go up and down. Laws will change, and new legislation will be enacted. These are all important factors on the list of what needs to be addressed in estate planning.
Estate planning is important and it requires significant time and effort. Without a comprehensive estate plan much or all of what you’ve achieved in your life could be lost or given to unintended beneficiaries.
A good way to plan is to draft your will like you were going to die today. Once you have that done, create a review system to ensure your will remains relevant and up-to-date. Talk with a qualified estate planning attorney and let him or her guide you through the process.
Effective estate planning will typically reduce your taxes and those of your estate. In addition, it can save time and expense when settling an estate.
Develop a good working relationship with an experienced estate planning attorney.
Instead of the surviving spouse or children searching for hours through papers and trying to determine what to do next, you should consult with an attorney who will have the documents in hand to help guide the process with minimal impact on the grieving family.
Reference: The (Memphis TN) Daily News (Sept. 23, 2016) “Estate Planning – It’s a Need”