Old or Ill? Draft Your Estate Plan Before It's Too Late

When it comes to the future protection of your loved ones and your hard-earned assets, it is never too soon to begin planning. Unexpected events happen in life all the time, and you wouldn't want your family and assets to be unaccounted for if something were to suddenly happen, leading to you passing away or becoming incapacitated. As you age, you are more susceptible to illness, and it is important to be proactive in ensuring your estate is accounted for.

If you have children under the age of 18, you can designate who you would like to assume responsibility for their care in the event that you can no longer care for them yourself. Deciding who will care for and raise your children is an extremely important decision, and it is likely that you want to be the person to make that decision, rather than having a judge appoint a guardian on your behalf.

An estate plan also enables you to specify what assets you want going to what beneficiary. You could, for example, leave everything to your children to be divided evenly, or you can outline specific assets to certain beneficiaries.

In drafting an estate plan, you can also appoint who you would like to make important financial and healthcare decisions on your behalf, if you can no longer make them yourself. These specific documents are called durable powers of attorney, and they will outline the specific wishes you have regarding your finances and your health, and will give someone responsibility for acting out these wishes for you.

Help Your Family Avoid Probate

In addition, creating an estate plan will save your loved ones the hassle of having to go through a long and expensive probate process. Dealing with the loss of a loved one is hard enough—you most likely don't want your family to have to spend an excess amount of time and money in court going through and administering your estate on top of it.

If you are ready to ensure your loved ones and assets are protected, contact an estate planning attorney today to get started!

Categories: Estate Planning, Probate