As your golden years approach, you will want to use those precious moments to spend quality time with your beloved family and friends without having to worry about how your assets will be divided. That’s why it’s essential to start the estate planning process today.
Life is always unpredictable. None of us know what the future holds, and taking the time to properly plan your estate now will provide your family with security when you’re no longer here with them. As you plan for your future, you’re also planning for the ones you will leave behind.
If you don’t want to leave your loved ones with the burden of unresolved financial issues, you should start planning your estate as soon as possible. Read on to learn more about estate planning for seniors and to discover five important considerations that come along with it.
Understanding the Estate Planning Process
As we grow older, estate planning becomes increasingly more important with each passing year. While the whole estate planning process can seem quite overwhelming, working with an experienced estate planning attorney can help make the process a lot easier. Ultimately, working with an estate planning attorney is the ideal route for most seniors. A good estate planning attorney will be able to properly handle all the delicate legal matters that come with planning an estate.
End-of-life discussions are never easy to have. However, these discussions are quite important. One of the most beneficial elements of working with an estate planning lawyer is that they will not only be able to navigate the legal pieces of your estate, but they will be able to help you create a written document of how you want your medical decisions to be handled towards the end of your life. Having these decisions clearly delineated will prevent your loved ones from having to make difficult and painful decisions during an extremely emotional time.
While it may not be enjoyable to get done, estate planning is truly a gift for the ones you will leave behind. Check out five important considerations that will come with estate planning for seniors below.
Five Important Estate Planning Considerations for Seniors
The needs of every individual are a little different when it comes to estate planning. However, there are certain considerations that every individual will need to look at as they plan their estate. The top five estate planning considerations for seniors include:
1. Your Will
The first major consideration that will come in your estate planning journey is how you will set up your will. While preparing a will is generally straightforward, if you have dependent children or unusual assets, then creating a will can take a bit more effort. Luckily, estate planning attorneys are available to help create wills for individuals with even the most complicated personal situations.
2. Power of Attorney
Another important consideration when it comes to estate planning has to do with creating a power of attorney. In the power of attorney, you will need to appoint a trusted friend or family member to oversee your health care and financial decisions if you ever become incapacitated. If you don’t appoint a trusted individual, a judge may appoint a family member to handle these matters on your behalf.
3. Advance Health Care Directive
Deciding to create an advance health care directive is another important consideration when it comes to estate planning. An advance health care directive is a document where you can precisely outline your health care preferences and end-of-life treatment to both your physicians and family members. Health care directives are an important consideration in estate planning and are extremely beneficial as they prevent your loved ones from having to make difficult end-of-life medical decisions all on their own.
4. Declaration of Incapacity
Another major consideration that comes with estate planning is whether to include a declaration of incapacity with your estate planning documents. Essentially, a declaration of incapacity is simply a document that allows you to clearly define what “incapacity” means to you and outline exactly when you want a designated family or friend to step in as your power of attorney to begin taking care of your affairs.
5. Beneficiary Designations
A final important consideration when it comes to estate planning is to make sure you have correctly outlined your beneficiary designations. You may have named certain beneficiaries on your retirement plans or life insurance policies early on in your career. As you become a senior, it is important to go back and look at these beneficiary designations to ensure that the individuals designated in these documents are still your intended heirs.
We hope these guidelines have made understanding the whole estate planning journey a little easier and that you now have a better idea of what important considerations you need to look out for as you finalize your estate.