Estate Planning – Planning for the Future

What You Should Know

Estate planning is an important part of everyone’s future, whether or not they want to think about who will handle their affairs when they pass away. By having these details planned out ahead of time, even if it is painful to think about, it makes the process much easier and more streamlined for loved ones who will ultimately be grieving your passing. A large part of estate planning is having a will in place to make sure you final requests are carried out and there are no questions on how affairs should be handled.

What are the Benefits of Having a Will?

Having a will is an important part of estate planning overall. While some people may think having a will in place is frivolous, there are a number of benefits to having this document prepared:

    • Having a will gives you the ability to decide who will receive specific assets when you pass away. For those individuals with children, it can also include who will have custody of the children should something happen to you while they are still considered minors.

 

    • A will can outline who will be appointed executor of your estate when you pass.

 

  • Drafting a will can give you peace of mind that the planning of your final affairs is already set and grieving loved ones do not have to struggle by making difficult decisions.

Choosing an Estate Executor

Choosing who will be the executor of your estate is an important decision and one that should not be taken lightly. When thinking about who will fill this role, think of someone who is well-organized, able to meet important deadlines, and someone who will be honest and forthright with what the will outlines. When making this decision, it is important to not worry about who may be offended or have their feelings hurt – an executor needs to be chosen based on their ability to complete the task.

Different Estate Planning Documents

There are a number of documents involved in estate planning and making sure to select the ones you need can be confusing. Here is a short explanation in order to gain a better understanding of these documents:

    • Last Will: Distribution of assets, legal guardian of minor children, last wishes including funeral arrangements

 

    • Living Will: Life support preferences, organ donation specifications

 

  • Living Trust: Avoid costs and delays of probate, keeps estate information private, decrease some estate taxes