Posted on 2 Nov, 2015
The number of Americans with a will is slightly above one-third of the total population. Less than half possess proper estate planning documents. It is critical that you make arrangements for your final days and after your death. Estate planning is not only about helping your family through a difficult time; it enables you to designate representatives to make decisions about your care, withdraw money from your accounts to pay bills and to cerebrate your existence in a way that meets your wishes. That said, there are a few essential Estate Planning strategies you should be aware of.
If you die without a will, you will have allowed total strangers to split up your estate and raise your children the way they see fit. If you do not have family, your property may be taken over by the state. Without a will, your children’s future will be determined by the court. Writing a will is the most efficient was for you avoid this.
This is a great option for someone who needs to support their family, especially if he or she has not saved enough money to provide for them.
It is a mistake to think that estate planning is only useful in the event of your death. It will also benefit you during your lifetime. These documents can help your family members fulfill your wishes during times when you do not have the ability. The documents include:
• A release-of-information form to permits doctors to share your health/medical records with your designated representatives.
• A durable power of attorney document that allows your agent to manage your legal and finance affairs.
• Directives specifying all medical treatments that you do or do not want towards the end of your life. You need to name a representative to make such decisions on your behalf.
If you value your privacy, avoid probate because it puts all of your affairs in the public record. The executioner is also required to alert your relatives and give claimants time to challenge your will. Setting up trusts will help you to retain control over your assets while you are alive. When you die, the property inside the trust is directly passed on to your heirs.
Your legacy will certainly include tangible personal property. If you do not distribute it fairly, your spouse and-or children may fail to agree on who takes what, making the whole process chaotic.
Your memorial or funeral plans should be made separately from the will. There are many great ideas of how you can plan your memorial or funeral.
Depending on your personal preferences or religious beliefs, you may already know how and where you would like to rest eternally. However, your choice may depend on the price. In regards to cremation, it is important to know that different locations have varying laws on cremation and its requirements; so plan accordingly.