Having control over the fate of your assets after your death and naming a trusted person to administer your assets for your benefit if you are ever unable to do so yourself can add comfort, peace, and value to your life.
An estate plan provides a space for you to clarify your intentions, leave instructions for surviving family members and articulate your expectations. Keeping your strategy updated over time can prevent misunderstandings from compromising your final wishes.
Planning for yourself
Caring for yourself is difficult when conditions prevent you from speaking or acting for yourself. Situations that result in serious injuries, debilitating illnesses and incapacitation might keep you from making confident decisions about your finances, your health and anyone who might depend on you for necessities.
An estate plan can prevent a number of stressful situations, allowing you to clarify who you trust to act on your behalf in emergency situations. Some examples of roles you might designate include the following:
- A health care proxy
- A financial power of attorney
- A guardian for any dependents
With clear instructions for participants in your plan, you can have the confidence that even in unprecedented circumstances, you will have everything you need.
Planning for others
Your family will appreciate your organization if you ever suffer incapacitation. Following your prompts, they can manage and eventually close your estate in alignment with your expectations. If you update your plan as needed, your surviving family members will benefit from your assets and you can keep your money in the hands of those you care the most about. According to CNN, a fine-tuned estate plan can also reduce the financial repercussions and taxes imposed on your family after your death.
If you have dependents who rely on you, having an estate plan can protect them in vulnerable situations. Recognizing the benefits of having a strategy might help you identify the best way to proceed so you can arrange something that works with your lifestyle and goals for the future.