Getting this estate planning advice will ensure your family benefits from your assets for years to come.
Do you know what estate planning advice you should put into action? No one knows what tomorrow may bring, which is why you should prepare for anything. With proper estate planning, more of your wealth will go to your family members instead of to the IRS or debt collectors. While it’s difficult to think about the future, planning ahead can mean the difference between debt or financial freedom for your family.
Don’t put off estate planning any longer. Consider these tips to protect your loved ones:
Begin Estate Planning Now
The sooner you begin estate planning, the better. Too many individuals wait until they become ill or incapacitated before planning their estate. This is not a wise plan. Estate planning should begin while you’re still young and healthy. Your beneficiaries should know well in advance of your plans. This will ensure things go as smoothly as possible when the times comes.
Write and Update Your Will
While the thought of writing a will may seem morbid, it’s actually quite helpful to your family. Everyone should file a legal will. This document will make the task of settling your estate an easier one. When writing a will, make sure you do the following:
- Name the executor of your estate
- List all beneficiaries
- Divide up all assets
- Determine guardianship for minors
Although some people choose to write their will without any guidance, hiring an attorney for this task is the best option. If you already have a will on file, be sure you update it on a regular basis. Without a will, a probate court will divide up your assets. Not only is this process time consuming, but it is also very costly.
Set Up a Living Trust
A living trust is different than a will. Some people benefit from having both, especially those with large estates. Drafting a trust will save your family both time and money after you pass. With a trust, your family may owe less—or even nothing at all—in estate taxes. While you are still alive, you can update a revocable trust. After you pass, however, this document becomes irrevocable, meaning no one can amend it.
Setting up a living trust will help protect your assets. Some trusts include a payment schedule. For example, if you have young children, a properly drafted trust may prevent them from mishandling their inheritance. With a trust, you’ll know that your family is financially protected even when you’re gone.
Plan for Final Expenses
After you die, the last thing you want your family to worry about is paying off your bills. Funerals are expensive. Instead of leaving these costs up to your grieving loved ones, consider setting aside money for this unexpected expense. Designate part of your estate towards funeral costs. Consider purchasing a life insurance policy that covers funeral expenses. This way your family can follow your wishes and provide you with the funeral you desire without going into debt.
You want to take care of your family even when you’re no longer around. Instead of leaving things up to chance, be sure you begin estate planning right now. The skilled professionals at Incompass Tax, Estate & Business Solutions will guide you through each step of the process. Call us for more information on how you can put these valuable estate planning tips into action.