Put simply, it’s never too early to start planning your estate. While many people think that planning their estate is only for retirees, this couldn’t be farther from the truth.
People can begin putting their estate in order as early as their twenties. Your lawyers here at Reddy & Feldhake are ready to take you through the estate planning process.
Let’s take a closer look at the estate planning process and the different steps you can take throughout the different stages of your life.
What is Estate Planning?
Estate planning is the process of legally outlining what will happen to your assets if you die or if you are unable to make decisions for yourself.
While the process may initially seem overwhelming, creating this estate plan makes the distribution process much more streamlined and less hectic for your family to sort out.
Every estate plan is different, but typical estate plans will include the following:
- A Will
- Healthcare Directive
- Healthcare Proxy or Power of Attorney
- Power of Attorney for Finances
- Living Will
A Lifetime of Planning Your Estate
A survey done by Caring.com revealed that half of the 1,003 adults that were surveyed currently had no plans in place to record their assets in a will. It’s never too early to start planning, and here’s a guide to what should be done during the years of your life.
During Your 20s
Now that you are a legal adult, your parent’s no longer have the legal right to make medical decisions for you. You should make sure that you have a healthcare directive completed that designates a family member to make decisions for you should you be incapacitated.
You should also allow family members to access your previous medical history though a HIPAA authorization. This means that your doctors can provide them with information about your health history.
During Your 30s and 40s
At this time, you may have purchased a home and have children. This is the perfect time to create your will and your trust. This will determine how your assets are distributed. Developing a trust will make sure that your assets are used to benefit your children for the rest of their lives.
During Your 50s and 60s
In addition to reviewing your will and trust, you should also be considering your retirement plans at this time. You should update your trust to include your parents and change the terms for your adult children.
After Your 60s
At this point, you are probably retired or getting close to it. You may have to amend your estate for financial changes if you are still working into your 70s. You should also continue to review your decisions as to what will happen if you are incapacitated.
Contact Reddy & Feldhake, P.C. to Plan Your Estate
If you’ve decided that it’s time to start planning your estate, reach out to us here at Reddy & Feldhake, P.C. You’ll be able to schedule a free consultation and see where you need to get started in preparing for your future.