Creating your first estate plan will give you peace of mind. Of course, since you’re new to the process, it can also bring stress into your life. Fortunately, when you know how to approach the estate planning process, it’s much easier to get on the right track and end up with a plan that suits you and your loved ones.
These questions are important to address
No two people are dealing with the exact same life circumstances, but there are some questions anyone can answer as they go through the process of creating an estate plan for the first time. Here’s where you should start:
- Are you okay with a will instead of a trust? There are benefits of both, and most people creating an estate plan for the first time start with a will. However, you should at least learn more about the details and benefits of a trust, such as its ability to ensure that assets avoid probate.
- Are you familiar with incapacity planning? It’s a common myth that estate planning is all about protecting your assets upon your death. This is a big part of it, but incapacity planning should also come into play. Who do you want to make medical decisions on your behalf if you’re unable to do so? Who do you want to manage your finances if you can’t? This is why incapacity planning is critical to your future.
- Who will you name as the guardian of your children? It’s common to create your first estate plan when you bring a child into your family. When doing so, make sure you name a guardian for them. This is the person who will raise your child or children if you and your spouse pass on before they reach the age of 18.
When you answer these questions, you’ll find it easier to create your first estate plan. It may not go smoothly from start to finish, but there’s nothing that should stop you from taking action.
Once you put in the time and effort, you’ll have an estate plan that gives you peace of mind, while protecting your loved ones and assets in the future.