Estate planning is important. Yet, an alarming number of people do not have an effective estate plan in place. A July 2021 survey conducted by the Gallup organization found that less than half of American adults have a will—let alone a comprehensive estate planning. You may be wondering: Why do I need an estate plan? The short answer is that a personalized estate plan will help to protect you, your family, and your assets. In this article, our estate planning attorneys explain why it is so important to have a comprehensive estate plan in place.
Five Reasons Why Need to Set Up a Comprehensive Estate Plan
1.- Maintain Control Your Own Property and Assets
First and foremost, an estate plan will allow you to keep control over your own assets. You can use a will—or other estate planning tools such as a living trust—to leave money and property to your selected heirs. Without an estate plan, you will lose control over your estate. If you pass away without a will or other estate planning documents in place, your assets will be distributed under the applicable state law.
2.- Preserve Your Assets and Manage Your Wealth
Estate planning allows you to manage, preserve, and protect your wealth—so that you can leave the greatest possible benefits to your family, loved ones, and the causes that you care about. With guidance from an estate planning lawyer, you can put the structure in place to limit your exposure to taxes, creditor claims, long-term care costs, and other potential threats to your life savings.
3.- Protect Yourself in Event of Incapacity
Estate planning is about a lot more than property. While you should use an estate plan to name heirs and protect your assets, you also need to put the right documents in place to protect your own well-being in the event that you become incapacitated and unable to manage your own affairs. Key estate planning documents—powers of attorney (POA), a living will, medical directives, etc—will help to ensure that you are best protected.
4.- Leave a Legacy—Express Your Final Wishes
Your estate plan can be used to leave a legacy. You can use your will and other estate planning tools to express your final wishes. Whether you have specific preferences regarding the funeral and burial process or you have wisdom that you want to share with your family, it should be addressed as part of a comprehensive estate plan. Use your estate plan to achieve your goals.
5.- Provide Clarity and Reduce the Risk of Conflict Among Your Loved Ones
Finally, one of the most important reasons to create a comprehensive estate plan is that it will provide clarity to your family when you are no longer around to give direct input. The absolute last thing anyone wants is to leave family and loved ones confused, stressed out, and in a fight. A well-crafted estate plan dramatically reduces the risk of serious personal or legal conflict between your loved ones.
An Estate Plan Should be Tailored to Suit Your Needs: You are Never too Young or Too Old
Estate planning is a fundamentally personal process. All adults should have an estate plan in place that is customized to meet their unique needs and objectives. You are never too young or too old to get started with the estate planning process. Whether you are a single person in your twenties who has relatively few assets or a married senior citizen with children, grandchildren, and a complex estate, proper planning can go a long way toward protecting you and your loved ones.
An estate planning lawyer can sit down with you and have an in depth conversation about your individual estate planning needs. With help from a skilled estate planning professional, such as the attorneys at EstateGenius, you can get your plan set up in as little as 14 days. Beyond that, an estate plan can be easily revised to meet life’s ever-changing needs. Flexible estate planning is effective estate planning.
Get Help From Our Estate Planning Lawyers Today
At EstateGenius, we are here to help you put the pieces of the estate planning puzzle together. Our firm helps people and families get peace, security, and legal protection through personalized planning. If you have any questions about estate planning, we are more than happy to help. Contact us today to set up your strictly confidential initial appointment with an attorney. We provide estate planning services in a number of states, including in Michigan, Washington, and California.