Estate Planning Deficiencies Check-Up
Why Do You Need An Estate Plan?
The number one reason people don’t create an estate plan is because they believe their estate is too small. However, estate planning is for everyone because without proactive planning, state laws will determine how your assets pass, to whom they pass, and when they pass. This can lead to undesired results, and is perhaps the most costly way to pass assets to loved ones – even if those assets are small. An estate plan isn’t just about tax and probate avoidance; it is about establishing a legacy and a clear process for your care and the care of your loved ones upon your incapacity or death.
A well-structured estate plan provides benefits in five key areas:
Peace Of Mind
- Name guardians for minor children
- Appoint trusted people to manage your affairs
- Keep your affairs private
- Build a legacy to pass to your loved ones
- Choose who will make emergency health care decisions for you in the event you are unable to do so
- Identify how you wish to determine if you are mentally disabled
- Care for you and your loved ones in the event you are unable to do so
- Avoid delays and expense of probate
- Prevent possible will contests and disputes
- Designate beneficiaries on retirement plans and life insurance policies
- Protect your children’s inheritance if your surviving spouse remarries or from a divorcing spouse
- Protect assets passed to your surviving spouse and to your children’s inheritance from creditors and lawsuits
- Minimize possible federal and state estate taxes at your death (including taxes on your house, life insurance and IRA’s
- Maintain consistency with current tax
Current Planning Questionnaire
The following questions will help you determine if your current estate plan is sufficient to accomplish your goals of providing for your care during incapacity, protecting your loved ones, and passing your assets to whom you want, when you want, and in the way you want.