There is no right time to start your estate planning. The best time to start is right now, no matter if you are single, just married, a college student or at retirement age. The important thing is to make sure you have a plan in place. However, it is not something that should be thrown together quickly.
Estate plans are very important because it guides your wishes for your property after you die. Since this can play such an important role within your family, you will want to make sure it is planned correctly. As you proceed through the planning process, here are a few mistakes to avoid that commonly happen.
You don’t understand estate planning
Many people stay away from estate planning because they think it is not for them or believe it is only for the rich and famous. The truth is estate planning is for everyone. Others refrain from estate planning simply because they don’t understand what it is. If you are unsure of all the intricacies involved, then you will want to work with a planning expert that is able to fully explain the logistics of everything to you so you are comfortable.
Not staying up to date with your estate planning
Once you have set up estate planning documents, they should be monitored on a regular basis just like you would for updates on your car, home or even wardrobe. As life goes on, you will experience several changes that need to be addressed in your plan. These include marriage, children and purchasing property. Your will, trust or other documents should reflect any changes in your life.
Not planning for unexpected disability
If you encounter a long-term disability, it can have a substantial effect on your finances. Knowing who will look after your finances, take care of your children or make decisions about your healthcare on your behalf is very important. The solution for this is to create a living trust and appoint powers of attorney to act on your behalf to make decisions when you are unable.
Not understanding powers of attorney
Planning for the unpredictable may not be easy but when it comes to estate planning, it may end up being one of the smartest things you do. By creating powers of attorney, if you ever become incapacitated in any way, a person who you trust will be able to make decisions for you. You should consider having at least two powers of attorney, one for medical care directives and one for financial matters.
There can be a lot of bases to cover when it comes to estate planning, so it is important to work with an experienced expert who can guide your decision making. When you have a well-put together plan in place, it is something your family will likely appreciate.