If you haven’t done your estate plan yet, you might assume you don’t need it or that the courts will handle the details of your smaller estate. But that default approach leaves out your personal goals.
Most people put off the process of defining their estate plan which can prove especially problematic for their heirs in the future. An estate plan that doesn’t appropriately reflect your intentions is no plan at all and failing to create any of these documents means that you have left the planning up to the state. Getting your financial goals organized is one of the most important steps you can take with the support of an experienced estate planning lawyer.
This will enable you to answer questions about what’s most important to you in accomplishing your estate planning goals and this should begin by asking the question ‘what do you want to do with your estate?’ There are four primary options to consider as you evaluate this question for you. When it comes to your estate assets you could:
- Give it to heirs
- Spend it
- Pay it in taxes
- Donate it to charity
For most people there are several different possible responses to this and you might use some combination of these strategies to accomplish your goals. Estate planning doesn’t have to be overwhelming, but it can make a world of difference for you and your loved ones. Set aside time to speak to an attorney about your rights.