When creating your estate plan, it’s important to make sure that you stay on top of your affairs and that you make smart decisions. Take a look at the following estate plan do’s and don’ts to better prepare you for the planning process.
Estate Planning Do’s
- Do work with an experienced attorney when creating your estate plan. Many people attempt to do their own planning and make mistakes that are extremely costly. You need to make sure that your plan is effective, legally valid, and fits in with your goals. A qualified estate planning attorney will be able to create a customized estate plan that is legal, error-free, and customized.
- Do take the time to think about your goals. Think about what is important to you and ask your estate planning attorney what else you should be thinking of. Common estate planning goals include incapacity planning, avoiding medical heroics, paying for long term care, naming guardians for minor children, asset protection planning, inheritance planning, avoiding probate, bloodline protection, remarriage protection, minimizing taxes and fees, and charitable planning.
- Do make sure that you regularly review and update your planning. Many people create a plan and then forget about it. If you experience significant life changes, ask your estate planning attorney to review your estate plan at that time. Your attorney will guide you through a review to see if updates need to be made. Otherwise, everyone should have their plan reviewed every 3 to 5 years. This best ensures that your plan works when you need it.
Take a look at the next blog post (part 2 of 2) September 15 to review estate planning don’ts. If you have any questions, or if you’re ready to create your estate plan, consult with a qualified estate planning attorney.