An estate plan is considered as one of the most important plans to make while alive. Failure to make this plan, could affect not just you, but your loved ones. Without an estate plan your loved ones will find it difficult to access your assets. Without a power of attorney, an important estate planning document, an individual will be designated to make important health care, legal, and financial decisions on your behalf.
In addition, without an estate plan, the court will designate a guardian for your little children if you and your spouse are no more. I bet you wouldn’t want any of this to happen to you or your loved ones, so it is best you plan your estate now so you don’t regret later.
A well-developed estate plan is what you need
There is a huge difference between an estate plan and a well-developed estate plan. An underdeveloped estate plan is one that lacks the proper components. Such an estate plan doesn’t come with the important estate planning documents like a trust for protecting assets from probate, a power of attorney, health care power of attorney, living will, and the likes.
A well-developed estate plan, on the other hand, can be regarded as an estate plan that boasts of all necessary components of an estate plan. Such an estate plan consist of a trust, power of attorney, health care power of attorney, letter of intent, etc.
Before contacting an estate planning attorney to draft an estate plan for you, it is important that you ask yourself this simple question: “What type of estate plan do I need?” do you need a below par estate plan or a well-developed estate plan. I bet you would consider the latter. However, how do you differentiate between a below par estate plan and a well-developed estate plan? In this article, I’ll be highlighting the properties of a well-developed estate plan.
What does a well-developed estate plan consist of?
1. Last will and testament
When it comes to planning your estate, having a last will and testament is probably the first thing that will hit your mind. Most individuals see this as just a will. Of course, it may sound a little gory to be thinking about your passing, but if you approach it as a financial plan and just that, it can help in making the entire process less uncomfortable.
Your will indicates the executor, or personal representative, for your estate. This is the individual who will supervise the distribution of your assets and ensure that your wishes are fulfilled. Your will should also designate guardian who will cater to your minor children and provide details concerning how and to whom you share your assets.
2. Revocable living trust
By setting up a revocable living trust, you can address the handling of trust assets should you become incapacitated or die without having to spend time enmeshed in court issues. Depending on how big or small your asset is, including its scope, your state of residence, and your distribution wishes, a will alone may be enough. That said, if you choose to create a trust, you will have to retitle your assets so that they fall under the trust itself.
3. Power of attorney
A power of attorney is a document that allows you (the principal) to choose an individual who will make important legal and financial decisions on your behalf in the event that you become incapacitated. If you fail to set up a power of attorney the court will step in and designate an individual who will make those decisions on your behalf.
4. Health care power of attorney
Similar to a power of attorney, a health care power of attorney allows you to select an individual who make important health care decisions on your behalf should you become incapacitated. If you fail to create this document the court will step in and make the appointment.
Need an Estate Planning Attorney?
Contact us if you need to know more about what a well-developed plan look like or if you are ready to create one. We boast of some of the best estate planning attorneys and they have what it takes to offer you the best estate planning services.