Now that the new year is here, people are trying to find ways that they can make improvements to better themselves. Making sure that your estate plan is in order can help with this by providing you with the peace of knowing that if something happens to you, your loved ones have a solid plan to follow.
Even if you have an estate plan, the start of the new year is a great time to review the contents and provisions to ensure that they accurately reflect what you want to happen when the plan comes into play. There are several things that you must consider whether you are updating or creating the estate plan.
Who do you have as your power of attorney?
You need to name a person who can make medical decisions for you and someone to make financial decisions for you. These powers come into the picture when you are incapacitated and can’t make them on your own. Make sure that the individuals in these positions are ready to do things that you would want. They have to put their own desires aside and act on your behalf. If you already have people named, make sure that they are still in the condition to make these decisions.
What do you have in your will and trusts?
Nothing that you’ve placed in trusts should be included in your will. You also can’t put assets in your will that are covered by other plans. For example, bank, investment and life insurance accounts are governed by payable on death and beneficiary designations. Go through the will and trusts to ensure that all your assets are covered and have a place to go when you pass away.
Ultimately, your estate plan should reflect what you want to happen when you pass away. Getting this together now can help you enjoy the remainder of the year because you know that your loved ones won’t be left guessing what to do if something happens to you.