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Is your estate plan actually complete?

On Behalf of | Apr 5, 2022 | Estate planning

You’ve written a basic will. All it really does is say that your heirs are supposed to divide the assets that you leave behind amongst themselves. It does list those assets so that they know what to be on the lookout for, and it provides them some basic direction in the sense that they know they need to share the assets. But is that good enough? 

The reality is that an estate plan should be much more than a will. This is a good place to begin, and it is good that you have a will, as opposed to nothing at all. But that does not mean that the plan is complete. Here are a few other things to consider: 

Powers of attorney

A power of attorney allows someone else to take action or make decisions on your behalf. You can use a legal or financial power of attorney, or you can set up a medical power of attorney. Many people do both, so they’re covered in every case. 

Trust funds 

You can also use trusts to distribute your assets with a bit more control over what happens to them. The will just gives the money to your heirs, but a trust can dictate how they use it or when they get it, among many other things. 

An executor designation 

You also want to designate someone to be your estate executor. This is the person that works to make sure that the will is actually followed. They can do things like distributing assets to your heirs or paying off debts from the money in your estate. 

These are not all of the different areas you need to address, but they show you how there are quite a few things to consider as you make an estate plan.