People in strong financial standing and in good health may believe that planning for what happens to their estate is a milestone that’s still a ways off. Some people will plan their retirement without considering what could happen to that money if something were to happen to them.
Death can be a complicated thing to plan for. It’s sometimes hard to know where to begin.
Here are five reasons why arranging a meeting with an estate attorney should be your first step.
1. Going To Court
One of the last things a parent or sibling wants is to force their loved ones into immediate legal actions upon their passing. But that will happen if a will is not established.
Depending on the size of your estate, a court order will be needed to access the deceased’s funds. Drafting a will and testament will make sure that your affairs will be settled and your loved ones can focus on grieving.
2. Appointing a Guardian
Children under the age of 18 require a guardian by law. If not established in a will, who the children will go to will be in the hands of the court.
Courts are not always privy to the inner workings of family relationships. Many times courts will decide to award guardianship to the closest family member in the best financial position to take care of a child.
However, this might not be who you would like to see care for your children. In many cases, a close family friend may be more fit to become the guardian. The courts need to be made aware of this before hand.
On a checklist for settling an estate, appointing a guardian should be near the top of the list.
3. Avoid Infighting
Without a plan drawn up by an estate attorney, the question of inheritance will linger among the family.
There are warning signs in a family bound to fight over their inheritance. Make sure to prevent things escalating toward a family-shattering fight by clearly dictating who gets what to an estate attorney.
4. Appointing an Experienced Estate Attorney
Without having an experienced estate attorney, an estate can fall victim to a number of unnecessary estate taxes.
Estate attornies are trained to know the state’s estate tax law back to front. A good one can make sure that an estate will be passed to loved ones with as little taxes attached as possible.
5. Peace of Mind
The last thing anyone wants to think about when they fall ill is what to do with their estate if the worst should happen. It adds unneeded stress to an already stressful situation and takes time away from being with loved ones.
Being able to take comfort in the knowledge that everything has already been handled can be a priceless thing. One’s golden years should be spent with family and friends, free from the financial stress that plagued the earlier parts of life.
It may be morbid to think about now but after a quick phone call and meeting, you will be able to return to focusing on self-care, safe in the knowledge that your estate has been settled.