You have an estate, believe it or not
Almost everyone does. Your estate is made up of everything you own, including your house, car, other real properties, investments, life insurance, furniture, and personal belongings. It also includes your checking and savings accounts. Everyone owns an estate, no matter how big or small, and they all share the same thing: You cannot take it with you when you die.
When that occurs (and it will, inevitably), you'll probably want to decide how those resources will be distributed to the individuals or organizations that matter to you the most. You must give instructions outlining who is to receive what from you, what you want them to receive, and when they are to receive it to ensure that your intentions are followed out. Your state has an estate plan for you if you don't have one already, but you might not like it.
Planning in advance, designating the individuals or organizations you want to get the possessions you own after your death, and taking actions now to make carrying out your plan as simple as possible later are all examples of estate planning.
Good estate planning entails quite a bit. It should:
Include instructions for your care and financial affairs if you become incapacitated before you pass away.
Make plans for disability income insurance to replace your income if you are unable to work due to illness or injury, long-term care insurance to help pay for your care if you are incapacitated for an extended period, and life insurance to provide for your family after your passing.
Make plans for the transfer of your business upon retirement, disability, incapacity, or death.
Family members with special needs can be taken care of without affecting their eligibility for government assistance.
To safeguard loved ones from creditors, to shield them from financial irresponsibility, or to protect them in the event of divorce, you may want to put assets into a living trust, complete or update beneficiary designations, or otherwise align your assets with your estate plan.
Importantly, estate planning is a continuous procedure rather than a single event. As your family and financial circumstances (as well as the applicable laws) change over the course of your lifetime, you should review and revise your plan.
It's not just for retirees
Although people may tend to worry about it more as they get older, it is not only for retirees. Sadly, we are unable to accurately anticipate how long we will live, because accidents and disease affect people of all ages.
Those who have earned wealth may consider ways to preserve it more, but estate planning is not just for the wealthy. Good estate planning is often more impactful for families with modest assets because the loss of time and funds because of poor estate planning is more detrimental.
People put off estate planning because they believe they do not possess enough assets, are too young, will have plenty of time to handle it later, it will be expensive or difficult, they are unsure of where to start or who can assist them, or they simply do not want to think about it. Their families then must pick up the pieces after something bad occurs to them.
We're here to help
Although we do not hold legal licenses, we collaborate with several organizations that can assist in setting you up with a state-specific strategy. To offer you with an estate plan (including a will, financial power of attorney, medical power of attorney, and HIPAA Authorization) in a timely and cost-effective manner, our firm has established a relationship that allows us to coordinate information. Leading industry experts (attorneys/estate planners) then draft and analyze your estate plan to give you a polished estate plan. According to estimates, this approach is suitable for about 75% of estate plans.
The procedure is rather simple. We give you a questionnaire to fill out whenever it's convenient for you. After everything is finished, a professional reviews the data and creates the documents. The entire process may be completed from the comfort of your couch and takes around a week.
We can assist you in finding an attorney who can better serve your needs if you have more complicated requirements.