Preparing your estate plan is a wonderful gift that you give to your family and friends. It not only saves money for your surviving loved ones, but it can also avoid unnecessary complications.
“Estate planning isn’t something you do for you. You do it for the ones you love.”Elder Law Attorney – Rebecca Mason
Estate Planning is all about the details
So much of estate planning focuses on the more obvious assets. For example, your home, bank accounts, and investments. But don’t make the mistake of forgetting about your personal property.
It’s unlikely your loved ones are going to want all (any?) of your stuff. Generationally we are all very different. For example, many Millennials seem to be more agile preferring to live minimally, and able to move across the country for an opportunity. Boomers and Gen X are equally as disparate. Think about what your family would really want to safeguard and what they may need to sell in an estate sale for example.
“Estate planning is often about making it simple for your loved ones to manage your affairs.”Elder Law Attorney – Rebecca Mason
Does your health care POA provide guidance for care?
Your health care power of attorney is one of the most important parts of your estate plan. When we prepare this for our clients, we include a four-page memo that walks through various questions about your desires for your health care.
Importantly, we also include discussion topics (if you could plan it today, what would the last day or week of your life be like?). So we consider all of these scenarios with specific questions about which types of treatments you would or would not want. Imagine a serious diagnosis of X disease. Would you want a
We encourage our clients to go through the memo with their named agent to give their agent peace of mind when the time comes to decide about their health care. It’s a tough conversation, but meaningful. As a result you find out a lot about yourself and your loved ones.
The Motley Fool Agrees
“Health care and financial power of attorney documents are the most important parts of nearly every estate plan. How you want to live, and how you want to die, are very personal decisions.”Michael Aloi (TheRetireGuy) Motley Fool
Do you already have an idea of what you want in your Estate Plan?
Our flat fee pricing structure helps make this option more viable.
So if you are on top of things and already have your plan in place, a well-crafted estate plan is a fantastic gift to give.
Planning for your estate and end of life care can fall to the back burner while juggling daily pressures and priorities. However, planning ensures that your wishes are known and followed by your loved ones in the event of a crisis or emergency. Consider these questions when beginning a discussion with family members:
Questions to consider in your Estate plan or conversations with family:
- Do you have a will? Where is it? Do family members have access?
- Do you have an advanced directive, such as a living will? Or health care durable power of attorney? Where is it?
- Who has your power of attorney? Is it the executor of your estate? How can he/she be contacted?
- Have you selected a funeral home? Planned or paid for a burial site?
- What is the location of essential personal papers?
- Birth certificates
- Marriage certificates
- Dissolution of marriage
- Social Security
- Military service records
- Where do you keep life, health, property, and long-term care insurance policies?
- Where is your checkbook? What bank do you use?
- Do you have a safe deposit box? Where is it, and is the key accessible? Do you have a list of contents? And do family members have access?
- Have you made a list of investments (savings accounts, certificates of deposit, stocks and bonds, etc.)?
- Have you considered including a plan for your digital records and assets in your estate planning for example?
- What are the names and contact information of the financial advisers/institutions that have the investments?
Interesting Estate Planning Articles:
The Estate Planning Gift To Give Your Millennial Children In 2019
“Forby Megan Gorman Forbes Contributor Personal Finance
the GenX and Millennial generations, estate planning might be the last thing on their mind. Overwhelmed by debt and trying to get their day to day financial lives on the right path, the nagging of their parents might make them resistant to following their advice.
There’s one thing Boomers can do to ensure their children do the right thing when it comes to estate planning: they can make a gift of estate planning to their adult child”
I write about achieving wealth and how it intersects with our lives.
Now Is The Best Time Of Year For Giving To Family Members
“When you plan to give income-producing property, giving early transfers this year’s income from your tax return to those of other family members, and they might be in lower tax brackets than you.”Bob CarlsonContributorRetirement
I research/write about all facets of retirement/retirement planning.
Why a Trust Is a Great Estate-Planning Tool — Even if You’re Not Rich
“Although there are dozens of types of trusts, the most common trust used for these purposes is a revocable living trust. Such a trust allows you—the grantor—to specify exactly how your estate will be distributed to your beneficiaries when you die, and in the process can avoid probate and heartache.”
By Sarah MaxFeb. 23, 2019 8:00 a.m. ET
Thank you for reading! Do you have friends or loved ones who could benefit from this content? Please comment below and consider sharing from our site at the bottom. We would love your comments too! – The Team @ Rebecca Mason Law