Yes, you do need estate planning! After all, I got into this area myself due to my own personal needs. What’s more than that, I saw that my friends could benefit from it. Most of us want to make plans and make things easier for our loved ones. For more on Estate Planning based on your life stages.
Estate Planning Benefits Rich, Married People
Estate planning does benefit rich, married people. The tax code focuses on married couples. As a result, benefits and strategies exist to avoid or defer estate tax. Married folks also benefit from the marital deduction and generation-skipping trusts.
Good Reason to Plan for Everyone Else
Even if you are not “rich” or “married,” you have good reason to do some estate planning.
- If you don’t plan, someone else must clean up your mess. Maybe you are OK with this. Personally, if my loved ones are dealing with the loss of me, it seems that it would be a good thing if I set my wishes down through a formal instrument and make things a bit easier for them. It is my stuff after all.
- You must decide the destination of your property and assets. Your parents may not want to inherit when they are “spending down” assets for any medicaid planning.
- Have a pet? Favorite ring? You would not believe the family battles that can arise when personal items, or family heirlooms, are at issue.
- Allow your family to keep your memory special and not associated with pain. The probate process is not fun, especially without a Will. Having your cousins take the grandparent’s wedding photos may hurt. You cannot assume your family will get along and resolve all happily.
Major Necessity for Families with Little Kids
Estate planning is crucial for parents of kids under 25. You plan the estate not so much for tax avoidance or benefits (although it may help), but to plan for your children’s lives.
- Nomination of guardians for children under 18.
- Setting up proper legal documents for young adults over 18.
- Set up trusts with direction to trustee/guardian as to distributions so children do not inherit too much, too soon.
- Taking ownership of your own issues and not leaving important decisions for others.
- Providing direction to trustee to allow resources for special things your kids may want to do.
Disclaimer: The Law Office of Lori Vella’s website contains general information directed to Florida residents. This firm does not intend to give legal advice through its pages and/or blog. If you need legal advice, we encourage you to find an attorney licensed in your state. This language on this website website does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and this firm.