ESTATE PLANNING

Estate Planning

By Jennifer Tucker
February 27, 2024 | 2 Min. Read

Let’s face it: organizing your estate plan probably doesn’t top your list of things to do, especially if you’re young and healthy. But if you believe it’s a task for “future you,” you may want to think again.

It’s easy to put off estate planning and consider it a task for later in life. You might be intimidated by the thought of getting started, or maybe you’re wondering if you even need an estate plan. No matter your age or financial situation, estate planning is essential. It allows you to gain peace of mind and take control of your financial future.

Estate planning is the process of arranging for the management and distribution of your assets after your death. It involves creating a plan that specifies who will make decisions on your behalf and how your assets will be managed and distributed.

Whether you’re in your 20s or your 60s, now is the perfect time to put a plan in place. Doing so ensures that your family will be cared for and your legacy will be protected.

If you’re looking for an estate planning checklist, you came to the right place. Follow these 4 simple steps to start your estate plan and secure your peace of mind:

  • Create a list of your loved ones. The first step in estate planning is to create a list of family members and loved ones who should inherit your assets upon your death. This may include your children, siblings, nieces and nephews, and others especially close to you. It may also include non-profit or charitable organizations you want to gift.
  • Take an inventory of your assets and liabilities. After identifying who should inherit your estate, it’s time to inventory the items included. Make a list of your assets, including bank accounts, investments, real estate, life insurance policies, and other valuable property. Document important details like account numbers and approximate value. You should also list your liabilities, such as mortgage payments or other debts owed. This will ensure your family knows of any financial obligations they’ll need to settle.
  • Choose the executor of your estate. One of the most important decisions you’ll make in estate planning is choosing the executor of your estate. An estate executor is responsible for managing and distributing your estate plan according to your wishes. The executor will need to gather your assets, pay off any debt owed to creditors, and manage other tasks and paperwork to settle your estate.
  • Get your legal documents in order. When your assets and liabilities are cataloged, you may want to meet with a financial advisor and estate planning attorney. These experts can help you get the appropriate legal documents in order, including insurance policy beneficiaries, powers of attorney, healthcare proxies, and organ donor forms. Organizing these documents now will ensure the smooth distribution of your estate when the time comes.

Estate planning isn’t about planning for your death; it’s about planning for your life. Take control of your financial future and ensure your loved ones and your legacy are secure. Learn more about estate planning today and gain peace of mind for tomorrow.

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