If it’s not already, one of your New Year’s resolutions should be to get your affairs in order, and this isn’t just for people in their golden years. Whether we like to acknowledge it or not, the truth is that a devastating accident or injury can strike at any moment. The only way to make sure that the people and property you care about are protected is by getting a plan in place.
Here are a few ways in which people of all ages and income levels can benefit from getting an effective estate plan in place in 2016:
1. If you have children, your estate plan will make sure that they are taken care of. Part of your estate plan will state who should take over guardianship of your children if you and the other parent are no longer able to do so. You can also set up a trust or another tool to make sure that your children would be financially provided for in the event of your death.
2. You can establish exactly what should happen regarding end-of-life health care. All too often, people end up unable to make medical decisions for themselves and they do not have health care directives set up. This can cause conflict among family members and could result in you receiving treatments that you wouldn’t want.
3. You can plan for the future of your hard-earned assets. You have worked long and hard for the assets that you possess today, so why would you let the state decide what should happen to them? By taking the time now to establish who should get what when you pass away, you can rest assured that your assets will transfer in a way that you see fit.
4. It’s possible to reduce the taxes that will be taken out when your property is transferred, helping to preserve the assets. By creating a tax-savings trust, you can leave a greater sum of wealth to the next generation, while at the same time reducing your current tax obligations.
If you do not have an estate plan in place, now is the time to do so. Make it your New Year’s goal to work with an estate planning lawyer, and then relax knowing that your family and property will be taken care of no matter what. Keep reading for more information on effective estate planning.