5 Documents to Take to Your Estate Planning Attorney
Dec 29, 2021 04:37 PM EST
Facing your mortality can be scary, but it can also be an excellent first step toward making sure your loved ones are cared for in the event of your death. Knowing that you will one day leave this earth, you may be motivated to put a living will together with the help of an estate planning attorney. However, before you make your appointment and get the will creation process underway, take the time to organize the following documentation.
An Outline of Your Goals
After making an appointment to see estate planning attorneys in Roseville CA, writing down your goals is one of the first things you can do to prepare for your upcoming meeting.
Think about how you want to provide for your loved ones, the assets you wish to protect, and how you'd like your possessions to be managed if you become incapacitated. It may even be worth considering any medical wishes you have if someone needs to make decisions on your behalf.
A List of Your Assets
Assets can be built up over such a long period of time that it's hard to keep track of them. Your loved ones also may not be aware of everything you own, such as real estate, a business, stocks, and life insurance policies. Before your appointment date rolls around, write down a list of assets. You may then be able to plan to have them liquidated or passed to your beneficiaries.
The average American has over $90,000 in debt. While you may imagine yourself being debt-free by the time you die, there's no guarantee that will be the case. Write down all information relating to debts you have, such as mortgages, personal loans, and credit card debts.
While the sums owed will change over time, detailing this information can give your power of attorney an idea of what your estate needs to pay upon your death.
Detailed Instructions for an Estate Plan
The majority of Americans don't have a will, which means they don't have formal instructions for who will receive your assets when you die. Before heading to an appointment with an estate planning attorney, write down whether you have any special wishes for your possessions and finances.
For example, you might wish for your nephew to receive your watch collection or a charity to receive the proceeds of a house sale. Without creating a legal document with your intentions, there's no guarantee that your wishes will be honored.
Write Instructions for an Illness or Incapacitation
If an illness deems you unable to make decisions for yourself, having these pre-planned can make a world of difference to your loved ones. Think about how you want your long-term care to play out, who you would like to manage your affairs, and whether you would want to be put on life support if you became incapacitated. These are all decisions someone will need to make, and there's no one better to make them than you.
Creating a will is one of the most important things you could ever do to ensure your loved ones are taken care of, yet it remains something that many people don't get around to doing. Organize these documents above and make an appointment with an estate planning attorney to get the process underway.