A well thought out and properly drafted estate plan is one of the most valuable gifts you can give to yourself and your loved ones. If you are new to the concept of estate planning, it may help to learn more about it. To get you started, a North Andover estate planning attorney at DeBruyckere Law Offices offers five important estate planning tips.
- It is never too early to start estate planning. Every adult should have an estate plan without regard to age, marital or parental status, or net worth. Your estate plan protects the assets you do have and helps to protect you and your loved ones from tings such as your own incapacity. It also ensures that the state does not determine what happens to your assets upon your death. As your family and your net worth grow, you can expand your basic estate plan; however, you need at least a basic estate plan now.
- An estate plan can help your estate avoid probate. One of the many benefits to creating a well thought out estate plan is that you can include tools and strategies that significantly reduce, if not completely avoid, the time your estate spends in probate after your death. That, in turn, means your loved ones will receive your estate assets much sooner and your estate will not incur a huge probate bill which effectively reduces the value of the estate you left behind for your loved ones.
- DIY legal forms may cost far more in the long run than they save you in the short run. This is, by far, one of the most common – and most costly – estate planning mistakes. In today’s “DIY” age, it may be tempting to avoid paying for professional help and save some time by using DIY legal forms you find on the internet; however, in the long run you will likely cost your loved ones a considerable amount of time and money when it comes time to probate your estate. Don’t put your loved ones in that position.
- Estate planning can help you plan for the possibility of your own incapacity. Incapacity planning is one of the most common components of a comprehensive estate plan. Contrary to what many people believe, incapacity is not something that only happens to the elderly as a result of Alzheimer’s or other dementia related conditions. You stand a one in five chance of suffering a period of disability or incapacity that lasts for five months or longer before you reach retirement age. Failing to plan for the possibility could result in the need for a judge to decide who takes over control of your assets and who makes important decisions for you while you are unable to make them yourself.
- Updating your estate plan is just as important as creating one in the first place. Because a lot can change in a short period of time, especially when you are young, it is best to review and revise your estate plan every three to five years until you reach your 50s. After that, a routine review should occur every five to eight years. In addition, important life events should prompt an immediate review of your estate plan.
Contact a North Andover Estate Planning Attorney
If you have additional questions or concerns, please contact a North Andover estate planning attorney at DeBruyckere Law Offices by calling our Massachusetts office (978) 969-0331 or our New Hampshire office at (603) 894-4141. Learn more or visit our website at https://dadlawoffices.com .
Given the complex legal and financial issues that are often involve with estate planning it is in your best interest to consult with an experienced estate planning attorney when you are ready to create your plan.
By allowing you to appoint someone of your choosing as a successor Trustee. That person will take over control of all trust assets in the event that the primary Trustee (you) becomes incapacitated.
Things such as marriage or divorce, the birth of a child, the death of a fiduciary or beneficiary, or the move to another state should cause you to review your existing estate plan.