It’s often important to ask questions when planning your estate. This way you know how you wish to plan out your estate in anticipation of your passing.
Here are a few questions you may need to ask yourself:
1. When should I draft my will?
One of the first questions people typically have is when is the best time to draft their will. The truth is that it’s important to have a valid will early. Many people wait to draft their estate plans because they believe they have plenty of time. Without a valid will, an unexpected accident or medical condition could jeopardize your estate and make it harder for family and friends to assess your last wishes.
2. Do I need to update my estate plans?
Many people create estate plans and then never look at them again. However, estate planning is a process that can go on for the entirety of your life. In other words, you can and should update your estate plans regularly. For starters, you could include new assets in your estate plans every few years. Or, a marriage, divorce or childbirth could cause you to need an adjusted estate plan.
3. What can help my beneficiaries the most?
Estate planning is more than anticipating your passing – you are helping your heirs conduct the distribution of your estate. To help make this process easier, you may need to consider what could benefit them the most. For example, you may want to forgo the probate process and give inheritance to your heirs without waiting or estate taxes. This could be done through the use of beneficiary designations, trusts and other careful planning.
4. Who will know about my estate plans?
Estate planning can be a private process, but it doesn’t have to be. You may wish to clue your heirs in on what to expect after you pass away. This way you can clarify your intent to your heirs and, hopefully, avoid issues during the probate process.
5. What should I know before I plan my estate?
Estate planning is a complex legal matter. You may need to reach out for legal help to understand all of your options when planning your estate.