Creating an estate plan can help California residents to prepare their estates for the future and protect their beneficiaries. However, it’s important not to make these mistakes when updating your estate plan documents.
Forgetting to review your will
A huge mistake when updating your estate plan is failing to regularly review your will. When you do this, you run the risk of forgetting something important. For example, if your main beneficiary dies before you and you don’t have a backup chosen, you won’t be able to leave an inheritance to the person you want.
Another example is if you get divorced and later remarry you might still have your former spouse listed. This would mean your current spouse won’t inherit your estate upon your death, which can make things ugly.
Not funding a trust
A revocable living trust is one of the best tools available in estate planning. However, you should always remember to fund it with assets and property. Don’t hold the trust for too long without funding it. You never know what might happen in the future. If you never place assets inside, a revocable living trust is useless.
Not including details about final arrangements
When updating your estate planning documents, it’s important to take into account your final wishes. This includes having documents such as powers of attorney that allow you to determine how you want your finances or medical care handled if you are incapacitated and cannot verbalize those decisions. You can include paperwork such as a DNR – do not resuscitate – or a document that outlines your care if you are terminally ill or in a vegetative state.
Not including information about your final wishes after your death is a mistake that you will want to avoid. It puts a huge burden on your loved ones who will be mourning your passing.
Not creating a cheat sheet on what should be updated
A cheat sheet can help you when it comes time to update your estate planning documents. Over the years, you may amass more than you can remember. Creating a cheat sheet makes everything easier.
Avoid making these mistakes with your estate plan and keep on top of everything.