Talking about death gives almost everyone a sorrowful feeling, especially if it is your death. Although people would rather not think about dying, it is essential to think about it. After all, everyone dies, and it is better to be prepared when that time comes.
When discussing the important matters regarding the death of a loved one, estate planning should be the first thing that comes to mind.
Here are some of the things that you should consider when making an estate plan:
1. Make a will.
A will is a document that contains the beneficiaries of your personal properties and assets. If you have minor children or disabled dependents, you can name your preferred guardian in it. You should also choose an executor when making one. The executor is in charge of implementing its contents.
If you have questions or clarifications regarding your will, then consulting a lawyer that knows the laws regarding estate planning, like Brian Douglas, is necessary. Remember, an incomplete or vague will can be contested in a probate court. So make sure that it is well-written and will stand in the court.
2. Consider making a living trust.
A living trust is like a will, but it does not have to go through the probate court. In a living trust, the successor trustee will divide the properties and assets included in the trust to the beneficiaries to which they were named.
3. Make health care directives.
The point of estate planning is making sure that you would still have some semblance of control even when you are incapacitated or dead. In terms of your medical care wishes, you can address your requests through a living will and power of attorney for health care. Having these documents will ensure that your medical care choices will be performed and followed even when you cannot verbalize them because of incapacity.
4. Make a financial power of attorney.
A designated financial power of attorney will be making the financial decisions for you if you will be unable to make them for yourself due to incapacity. The designated does not have to be a lawyer, it can be anyone that you trust.
5. File the necessary beneficiary forms.
Banks allow you to file beneficiary forms so that all the money from your bank savings account, retirement plans, and even your stocks and bonds can be paid directly to your beneficiary when you die. It doesn’t have to go through the probate court, making the process easier and faster for your beneficiary.
6. Make sure you have a life insurance policy.
Life insurance is beneficial for the loved ones you’ll leave behind because it will give them access to immediate cash that they may need. Naming the beneficiary of your life insurance to a loved one also excludes it from the probate court. Thus, making it a sound investment to secure your family’s future needs.
7. Plan your funeral.
Funerals are another uncomfortable topic that no one wants to discuss with their loved ones. Planning your funeral ahead will make sure that you get to decide how you go from this world. It is also another set of decisions that you can take off of from your loved ones when you die. You can even plan for the payment of the funeral and other related expenses through a payable-on-death account you can set up through your bank.
8. Decide what happens to your body.
You have the option to donate your organs or body parts when the circumstances allow you to. But you can make the final decision. If you wish to give some of your organs or parts of your body, make sure you have a donor card. If not, make sure that you inform your doctors of your wishes.
You can also decide in advance how your body will be disposed of, through a burial, cremation or others.
9. Keep all your documents safe.
All your important documents like the will, insurance policies, property deeds
Estate planning is not something that you should be putting off further. Even if it is the elderly who often thinks more of it due to their old age, you should still consider it while you are young because you never know if an accident will take your life. It can happen anytime.