People plan every year for major catastrophes and pay thousands of dollars to protect themselves if one of those catastrophes occur with health insurance, auto insurance, home owner’s insurance and/or an emergency savings account. But rarely will people plan for the one thing that will happen to each one of us. We will all DIE someday, and yet 70% of Americans die without doing any planning, not even a simple will.
You need Estate planning if….
1. You are a young adult, married or single, with no kids.
If you were to get into an accident, who would make your medical decisions?
Who would make financial decisions?
Where would your assets go? According to California’s plan? To your nieces/nephews? Or to Charities?
2. You have young children.
Who will be their guardians?
Who will manage their finances?
Do you want them receiving their money when they are 18?
Are there any special needs to plan for?
Have you ensured they will be taken care of financially with life insurance?
3. You have assets totaling more than $150,000 in gross value.
Have you taken steps to avoid a costly probate?
Who will manage your finances if you are incapacitated?
Who will make your health care decisions?
Will your family fight over the personal property?
What happens with your assets when you die?
Are you organized- will your agents be able to figure out what you have and how it should be managed?
4. You have aging parents.
How will you manage their finances/ health care if they are incapacitated?
Will you have to deal with and pay for probate?
Are you talking about their wishes and who will be in charge?
Have you planned for long term care costs?
All of these issues can be addressed with an Estate Plan, which can evolve over time as your life circumstances change. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that Estate Planning is only for the elderly or infirm.