Estate Planning is for everyone

Estate Planning

This is one in a series of 10 posts to help you get, and remain, financially healthy. It’s best to start at this post. [click here]

Listen up… when most people hear the words “Estate Planning” thoughts of the rich and famous come to mind. However, quite the opposite is true. Estate Planning is for everyone.

If you are alive, you have an Estate. It may not be worth much or it might be worth a lot, but none the less, each of you has an Estate.

Here is a simple scenario; a young married couple with three children is doing well. They make a comfortable income; they have a few assets (i.e., nice home, cars, savings, maybe a retirement account). But, they have no Will, Living Will, Trust, or Power of Attorney in place. What can happen?

If they both die at the same time without a Will, they leave no instructions for guardianship for their three beautiful children… what a mess this becomes.

Furthermore, if they have sizable assets in the Estate (this includes all life insurance proceeds) those children have full access and complete control of the money when they reach age of majority (typically between ages 18 and 21)… nothing like handing $500,000 to an 18 year old and they get to choose what to do with it. Are you beginning to get the picture?

What if one spouse becomes incapacitated (maybe an illness, maybe a bad accident). With no Living Will in place the healthy spouse has to decide what to do… should they pull the plug or wait? Should they continue with food or hold off? It can get ugly and all of it could be resolved with a Living Will.

So, don’t wait until you “think” you need these Estate documents. I am telling you (especially those who are married with children) you need them.

This is the last post of a 10 post series on getting, and remaining, financially healthy. After reading through the material, and starting your own personal financial plan, please feel free to contact me if you have questions. [click here]