You are not the only person putting of getting an estate plan. Many American’s do. In fact, a 2020 survey done by Caring.com found that only 47.9% of adults 55 years or older have any type of planning documents. But you should not keep putting it off. While no one wants to think about being ill or passing, if the pandemic has taught us anything it is that life is not a guarantee and it is best to be prepared.
A recent article from Kiplinger entitled “The Essentials You Need for an Estate Plan” takes a look at the three things you need to do get started on preparing your estate plan.
- Write a Will And Update Your Beneficiaries. A basic will and beneficiary designations are your first steps to directing your assets to the people you want to inherit them. However you should know that a will does not help you avoid probate.
- Make Sure You Have A Living Will. A living will is one type of medical directive, another is a Power of Attorney for healthcare. Even if you are young it is important to have a medical directive of some type. Neither your parents or spouse will be able to make medical decision for you without the proper planning in place.
- Decide If You Need a Trust. Getting a trust is a great way to ensure you avoid probate. A properly funded and created trust will help make things easier and less expensive for your beneficiaries. It is also a private document. A will gets filed in the county where you passed away after your death. A trust on the other hand does not normally get filed with the courts.
Putting off getting an estate plan is easy, but the easiest choice is not always the right one. Speak with an estate planning attorney and get started today to give your loved ones peace of mind.
Reference: Rodeck, D. (2021). Kiplinger. “The Essentials You Need for an Estate Plan”. https://www.kiplinger.com/retirement/estate-planning/602643/the-essentials-you-need-for-an-estate-plan