Many people and families are understandably hesitant to begin the estate planning process. After all, death and decline are not topics that people want to address, and it is natural to want to avoid them. Families may also want to avoid making difficult decisions that could cause conflict. However, problems will be far greater in the future if there is no estate plan. This is why you need to start now if you have not already.
The reality is that an estate plan is more than just a will. There are numerous components that families should consider. Besides a will, they include:
These can be complicated arrangements, and it is vital they are done right. First, the family must have an idea of how their estate plan will look. These are not always decisions that families can make when they do not know their options. An estate planning attorney could do the following:
For many families, the goal is to have things as smooth as possible when their loved one starts to decline or passes. The last things that they want are to have court fights over decisions and to go through a messy probate process. An estate planning attorney can help you avoid all of that.
Another common misconception is that families can put their estate plan on autopilot and rely on it when it is necessary. Life circumstances change over time, and the estate plan that you settled upon years ago may not fit your current situation. You should also sit down with an attorney from time to time to review your estate plan and make any changes if necessary. You should also have this conversation after every major life event.
Many people think that they can execute a series of off-the-shelf documents as part of a DIY estate plan to try to save money. Often, they end up regretting this when things go wrong. Courts will look very closely at the exact wording of a will or power of attorney, and they will not read anything into the language. Then, an estate plan may end up being counterproductive because your family can still end up stressed out and embroiled in litigation. Think of estate planning help as an investment for the future.
Contact the attorneys at Kryszak & Associates to start the conversation about your estate plan. Waiting too long to start this process can work against you because you never know exactly when you will need an estate plan. Don’t get caught without one when the time comes.