We get it, estate planning isn’t exactly what you want to do over your weekend. But it is crucial to prepare for the future, and protect your assets. Estate plans aren’t just for the rich, we say they’re for everyone. Here’s a few reasons why:
- Protects Beneficiaries: Estate planning designates heirs for your assets, whether it’s a vacation home or stock portfolio. Without a plan written out, your assets will be handed over to the courts. From there they decide who gets your assets, which is not a simple process. It can take years, rack up fees and get ugly. The court doesn’t know which sibling has been responsible and which one shouldn’t have free access to cash, nor will the courts automatically rule that the surviving spouse gets everything. In order to instill control over your assets, you will need an estate plan.
- Protects Young Children: Young parents often don’t think they need an estate plan, but if you have small children it is especially important. In the unfortunate case of an early passing of the parents, you want to assign legal guardians. This ensures that your children are cared for in the manner you want. If there is not a will stating the legal guardian of children under 18, the courts will step in and determine who will raise your children.
- Heirs Avoid Large Taxes: Transferring assets through an estate plan helps to ensure the smallest tax burden possible. Couples can reduce much or all of their federal and state estate taxes and inheritance taxes with estate planning. Without the planning, taxes can get very pricey.
- Eliminates Family Drama: Family members often fight over who deserves a bigger cut of the inheritance, who has had a bigger role in the life of the family member who has passed and other stories we all hear. Estate planning enables you to choose who controls your finances and assets if you become mentally incapacitated or after you die. You can set the parameters of the trust and will, eliminating any room for probate. Your assets will be handled exactly in the way you intended.
Estate planning protects your assets and your loved ones when you are no longer there to protect them. For more information on estate plans, visit our Trust & Estates page or contact us to set up a consultation today firstname.lastname@example.org. See what Tardiff & Saldo can do for you.