A common phrase that gets used when describing the preparations of someone’s latter years is “making sure all your affairs are in order.” This certainly carries a lot of connotations with it. Many times, it’s assumed that your final estate planning only involves the drafting of a last will and testament. However, there’s quite a bit more to this scenario than you might realize. A successful estate plan can ensure that your assets are distributed properly in the event of your passing and someone can manage your affairs if you’re unable to.
Some Facts You Should Know
- Income level is not a discernable factor for who can have estate planning. No matter what your income level is, you can arrange for your assets to be looked after and distributed after your passing.
- A lack of estate planning means that your assets can be distributed by probate court.
- Estate planning involves the process of choosing an attorney or family member
What Falls Under an Estate Plan?
When orchestrating your estate plan, there are six main categories that must be dealt with.
- Will & Trust Having a will is the first step. A will ensures that your assets are distributed according to your wishes.
- Power of Attorney If you’re unable to act on your own behalf, drafting a power of attorney will grant someone permission to do so. Someone like a spouse or a family member is the most ideal choice.
- Beneficiary Designation Insurance and retirement plans usually contain a beneficiary. This is where the plans are distributed in the event of your passing outside the confines of a will.
- Letter of Intent While a letter of intent isn’t always recognized by law, this is a detailed set of instructions left to your beneficiary dictating how you would like your assets distributed.
- Healthcare Power of Attorney In the event of your inability to do so, a HPAC can designate a party to make important healthcare decisions on your behalf. Like every other person you choose for an important role in your estate planning, it should be someone you can trust who shares similar views.
- Guardianship Designations The final choice in estate planning is designating the new guardian of children who will be under the age of 18 in the event of your passing. This choice should be someone you trust and who has the means and location facilitate guardianship.
Law Offices of Kenneth J. Nota
While making plans such as these can seem stressful and intimidating, you don’t have to undertake them alone. The law offices of Kenneth J. Nota have helped hundreds with their estate planning and can do the same for you. Visit https://www.kennotalaw.com/ for more information.