Estate planning is a big deal because it is for everyone, regardless of financial status, says The South Florida Reporter, in the new article entitled “Why Estate Planning Is So Important.” That’s because life can be full of unexpected moments and before you know it, it’s too late. And if you have a family dependent on you, it becomes absolutely essential.
Estate planning is designed to protect your family from complications concerning your assets when you die. Many people believe that they don’t require estate planning. However, that’s not true. Estate planning is a way of making sure that all your assets will be properly taken care of by your family, if you’re no longer able to make your decisions due to incapacity or death.
Without estate planning, a court will name a person to handle your assets and finances when you die. This may often not be the person you would have chosen for such an important task. This can make probate, a process that is already lengthy, expensive and stressful, even more of a challenge for your surviving family.
To protect your assets after you die, you need to have an estate plan in advance. You also need to address possible state and federal taxes. Your estate plan should be a way to decrease your tax burdens.
With a proper estate plan, your final wishes for your assets will be set out in a legal document. With a will or living trust, all of your assets will be distributed to your beneficiaries, according to your final wishes. Family fights, sometimes severe and long-lasting enough to create estrangements, often result from fights arising from confusion and differences of opinion about what a deceased relative would have wanted.
It is also important to remember that if you do create an estate plan, you’ll need to update it every once in a while—especially if there’s a significant event that happened in your life, like a birth, a death, or a move. Your estate plan should be ever-changing, since your assets and your life can also change.
Because estate planning is a big deal, it’s vital that you work with an experienced estate planning attorney who can help you draft the legal documents that will make certain your family is taken care of after you pass away.
Reference: South Florida Reporter (June 12, 2019) “Why Estate Planning Is So Important”