At some point in life, every person has to spend time planning their estate. As death is an eventuality every human being has to face, it is only rational that we put our affairs in order during our lifetimes. Essentially, estate planning is the term used to refer to the process of formulating documents which dictate the way all your worldly belongings will be handled after your demise. It includes all your assets and even debts as well.
According to estate planning lawyers, the greatest advantage of preparing a will and, if needed, a trust is that everything is carried out according to your wishes after your death. Although, there are some things you must consider while planning your estate. The top three things are listed below:
#1 List and Value Your Assets
The first and foremost aspect of real estate planning is to create a list of all your tangible and intangible assets. From real estate holdings to corporate shares, everything with any sort of financial value is considered as an asset. By formulating a list of all the assets you own, you can make your estate planning process more streamlined, cogent and comprehensive. Failing to consider any of your assets could create complications in the implementation of your estate plan after death. For example, if you “forget” that you have named someone as beneficiary of a life insurance policy, you may give them a much greater share of your assets than you intended.
#2 Assess Your Liabilities
It is a common misconception that only assets are included in the estate planning process. Your liabilities and debts are also an integral aspect of your estate plan. Therefore, you must assess all your liabilities such as outstanding bills, mortgage payments or any other loans. Real estate planning does not simply entail deciding who gets your money but it also involves deciding who bears the responsibility of paying off your debts.
#3 Consult your family
While this might not seem like a necessary aspect of estate planning, talking with your family members in confidence can help you avoid any issues in the execution of your will or trust after your demise. For instance, it is wise to ask if anyone would be willing to take on the responsibility of managing and distributing your assets after your death rather than naming them as Successor Trustee or Executor and dumping that responsibility on their shoulders.
If you are planning to prepare your will or trust, or wish to get further information regarding estate planning, contact the Offices of John Grundy at 330-637-9030 to schedule a free consultation session with an experienced estate planning lawyer.