Reasons for starting an estate plan as soon as possible

On Behalf of | May 16, 2024 | Estate Planning

Starting an estate plan may be something you would rather not contemplate. It seems especially unnecessary when you are young and healthy.

However, establishing an estate plan sooner rather than later can provide numerous benefits and assure that your wishes are honored in the event of incapacity or death. It is never too early to prepare for the future.

Protecting loved ones

An estate plan allows you to direct the distribution of assets after you are gone. Absent such directives, state laws will dictate how your assets get distributed, which is unlikely to align with your preferences.

Designating guardians

If you have minor children, naming guardians ensures their care and wellness after your passing. Choose individuals who share your values and parenting style to raise your little ones should you become unable to do so.

Avoiding probate

Probate is the legal process of administering an estate after someone dies, which can be time-consuming, costly and subject to public scrutiny. By establishing an estate plan, you may implement strategies to avoid or curtail probate, such as creating a living trust, designating beneficiaries and titling assets jointly with rights of survivorship.

Minimizing estate taxes

Without proper planning, there may be significant estate taxes, severely reducing the money received by your heirs. Implementing estate tax planning strategies can help limit this penalty.

Guaranteeing business continuity

If you own a business, having an estate plan can ensure it continues to run smoothly. A well-crafted estate plan will outline succession expectations and provide liquidity to cover business expenses.

By starting an estate plan early, you may enjoy peace of mind, knowing your affairs are in order. Once done, regularly review and update these documents to ensure they are current and legally sound.