Dear Mom and Dad: Are You Prepared for Tomorrow?
Putting your affairs in order is not a sign of impending doom, but one of the best things you could give your kids. Your estate plan has nothing to do with your health and how long you live. It does, however, give your loved ones the power to make decisive decisions and save them from significant hassle at a crucial time.
Estate Planning: Essential tips for parents
While estate planning can be scary and complicated, it doesn’t have to be. These steps make it easy and approachable. Here are a few tips on navigating the much-dreaded waters.
Organize your emergency information
Ensure all vital information is organized in one place. Information such as bank accounts, digital assets, rentals, lawyers and financial advisers information should be available in a single directory. Also, make sure it’s accessible. It’s no use to anyone if it’s inaccessible when they need it most.
Research reveals that most parents who are yet to create an estate plan just “haven’t gotten around to doing it.” If information is organized, coming around to do it would be easier.
Get a trustworthy estate planner
Is your legal paperwork in order? It should be. An estate planner can help with that. With the required documents, they can draw up an estate plan tailored to your needs. Do ensure everything is clear and easily understood. If you can’t afford one, then an online do-it-yourself alternative could work, too. It’s better than nothing. But a professional is still your best bet.
Confirm what’s in your package
Estate plans usually have unique purposes based on the needs of the client. But ensure all your needs are covered.
For instance, at Apple Payne Law we tailor plans to the needs of our clients, but all our packages come standard with:
- A Will
- Living Will
- Durable Power of Attorney
- Healthcare Power of Attorney
- These are the very essentials of estate planning, as such, they would ordinarily be included in any package, but be sure to confirm from your attorney. It should be spelled out clearly for non-legal persons to understand.
Tell your loved ones about your plans
We’ve said to make your documents accessible. But as parents also keep your kids in the loop. Those involved should be aware. Revealing specifics of the estate plan is at your discretion, but they should know it exists and whom to meet when the need arises.
It’s not an everyday conversation but the need to discuss your kids’ future with them is vital, especially before a potential crisis or inciting event.
While estate planning might seem complicated, if broken down to simple steps, it’s not, after all. And having the right attorney would certainly help. Some parents believe they don’t have much to leave behind that requires creating an estate plan. And that might be true, but the State will come for the little you have, except you expressly state otherwise beforehand. It’s not peculiar to you, it’s just standard procedure. It’s the law. Whether or not you choose Apple Payne Law as your attorney, every parent should draw up an estate plan.