Knowing how to complete your estate planning as efficiently as possible is critical. If you don’t take time to plan your future properly, a probate court may have the authority to distribute your assets as it sees fit. Thorough estate planning is one of the best ways to help ensure that your finances and assets are distributed per your choices after your death.
Getting ready for the future
Using a will is essential for estate planning as it helps ensure your property is distributed according to your wishes. Naming specific beneficiaries to take possession of your assets can make the transfer of items smooth and easy, helping to avoid legal battles. You’ll also want to name a durable power of attorney to act on your behalf and handle your assets if you become mentally incapacitated. Setting up reciprocal powers of attorney may be best if you’re married.
How can you ensure your assets are distributed correctly?
Designating beneficiaries helps ensure that your assets go to the individuals you choose. Otherwise, the court system will likely get involved. Including a letter of intent defines what you want to have done with a specific asset after you become incapacitated or die. It may also include special requests for funeral details. You’ll also want to name a durable power of attorney, which allows this agent or person to act on your behalf and handle your assets if something happens to you.
How are guardianship and health care handled?
Another vital step to take when estate planning is choosing a guardian for your children. Taking this action helps ensure your kids are looked after according to your wishes after you die. Making sure that the couple or individual you choose is receptive to this responsibility is critical. Using a health care power of attorney (HCPA) can also be advantageous. It designates another person to make essential health care decisions on your behalf if you are unable to make them.