Estate planning is an important part of being an adult.
Maybe you just turned 18.
Perhaps you have been a legal adult for a few years now.
You are young with your whole life ahead of you.
Estate planning can wait, right?
According to a recent Forbes article, titled “Reviewing Your Financial And Estate Planning Checklist,” this is not true.
Age and income should not deter you from estate planning.
As an adult, you have assets and, at the very least, yourself.
These facts alone form the basis for your estate planning need.
All responsible adults prepare for the unpleasant possibilities and realities of their future.
What should you do?
A last will and testament is the basic tool for asset distribution.
Next, you should create a durable power of attorney.
You should have one for your finances and one for your health care.
What do these accomplish?
They will allow you to designate a trusted individual to act on your behalf to make your personal, health care, and financial decisions should you be incapacitated.
Do you have retirement accounts, life insurance or transfer on death accounts?
If yes, these do not pass through your last will and testament.
Should you die, the assets or benefits will pass via the beneficiary designations on the account.
These are not something you should fix and forget.
You need to review and update your estate plan and the "alignment" of your assets, especially if there has been a birth in the family, a death, marriage or divorce.
You may consider having a living trust.
What does this do?
It allows you to provide direction for distribution of assets held within the trust without being subject to probate proceedings.
Do you have digital assets?
These include social accounts, digital files, passwords, photos, emails, video gaming accounts, online storage, websites, blogs, and online document.
If yes, do not neglect them.
They are an important part of your estate.
Create an asset inventory, as well as how to access each.
Take steps now to protect yourself and what you have.
Contact an experienced estate planning attorney without delay.
This is not a DIY project, if you want to do it right.
Reference: Forbes (January 4, 2019) “Reviewing Your Financial And Estate Planning Checklist”