Marriage is one life event that should make you say, “it’s time to think about our future.” One of the most important parts of that involves creating an estate plan. It’s not an easy topic to talk about, but it is important for newlyweds to discuss — especially if you have or are planning on having children. This discussion needs to be with your spouse, but estate planning lawyers can also help you with your estate strategies. Here are some tips to help you discuss your estate plan.
The term “estate” can often lead you to only think of your house, but your estate encompasses everything you own — house(s), car(s), bank accounts, investments, and other personal possessions. Because of this, estate planning is important for all couples. You cannot take any of your estate with you when you pass away; so planning for what happens to your valuables when you pass allows YOU to dictate the outcomes, rather than a court or a third party.
When you’re married, your estate planning strategies should be determined by both you and your spouse first. Feedback from other family members can be helpful, but ensure that you and your spouse’s wishes are the driving factor. Because death is never a topic that people want to think about, let alone talk about, you need to approach the topic with sensitivity. Here are some tips that might help to make the discussion easier for all involved.
An estate plan is a legal issue. Securing legal advice from an estate planning lawyer will help immensely with your estate planning. If you have decided an estate planning attorney preparing your first-time estate plan is the best option for you, you will need to gather all of your relevant accounting and possessions information as well as any relevant documentation. If you’re going the DIY route, or went that direction but haven’t updated it in a while, you should have your will, living will, power of attorney, and trust documentation present. All of those documents may not relevant in your situation, but the more information you have the better it will be when you enter the meeting with your estate lawyer.
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