Nobody really wants to think about the end of their life. They don't want to worry about what will happen to their family (and their things) when they are gone. Instead, they want to enjoy every minute that they have. You should live your life to the fullest, but also plan for the unexpected.
Unfortunately, if you don't have a plan for your estate, the state will decide who gets what. Planning your estate is never easy. To help you get started, here are some estate planning questions that you need to think about.
Estate Planning Questions
Who should be your children's legal guardian?
Though most parents dread thinking about who will raise their children when they are gone, if they don't have a guardian named in their estate plan, the court system will make that decision for you. Do you really want to leave their lives up to the court?
Who do you want to end up with your things?
While most people are quick to talk about their parents, spouse, and children, are there others that you have forgotten?
Is there a part of your estate that you would like to go to charity so you can help others?
Are you forgetting anyone else?
Is there anyone who formed a part of your life at some point, which you would like to include in your will and testament?
What about your pets?
If you really care for your pets, not only should you designate someone to care for them, you should also set aside money in order to pay for their care.
If you have expensive animals or ones expected to live for a very long time, you might want to think about setting up a trust for your pets.
Do you have a prenuptial agreement?
After being married for many years, these documents often become forgotten.
However, they may play a part in your estate planning so be sure to dig them out when you go to see a lawyer.
What about your business?
It’s important to decide if you want to pass your business on to your children. If you have a business partner, there are other items to consider.
Perhaps, you may plan to sell it or simply dissolve it upon your passing?
Are you planning on gifting money?
Though most people would be happy to support a family member or friend who is struggling without thinking about it, there are tax implications, which need to be addressed when planning your estate.
For this reason, you should talk to a professional about this issue.
What about a living will?
It is important that you talk about a living will prior to needing one. You should really think about what you want.
Do you want extraordinary measures to be taken to save your life or prefer to pass?
If you don't decide, your family may struggle with the decision. By writing a living will, you are taking over the decision so your family doesn't have to.
What are your user names and passwords for your online accounts?
The Internet is our access point for most of our accounts. It is important that, when you are gone, your family and friends will be able to access your account information.
Do you really need a lawyer to help you through this process?
Yes, you really do. An experienced lawyer will know the right questions to ask to ensure that your estate is managed the way you would like. You won't have to worry about any mistakes that may occur if you try to do it yourself.
To ensure that your wishes are carried out as intended, speak to a lawyer. Though it can be hard, going through this process will ensure that your family and your business are taken care of after you are gone.
Contact us to ensure that your estate is in order. We will help to ensure that your wishes are carried out the way that you would want them to be!