Estate Planning 101: Start your estate plan today!
If you are reading this, then you have already taken the most important step in planning for your estate. It can be overwhelming to think of everything that must go into your estate plan…all of the questions that must be answered, and all of the preparation and considerations that must be made. Estate planning is one of the most important things you can do to insure your family and your property are managed according to your wishes in the event of your death.
The second most important step is to start writing down some of the easy questions in a single document that you can use to begin the estate planning process. These questions should be the ‘basics’ regarding you and your family, and will be the basis for the final estate plan. Start with the easy questions: What is your name? Are you married? Do you have any children? How many? Were you previously married? Do you have children from that previous marriage? etc..
By writing down these answers, you will begin to form up the basis for your plan. It will also put these questions in your mind so that you can start to consider your wishes for the distribution of your estate.
Your plan will most likely consist of several documents that include a living, revocable trust, a durable power of attorney, an advance health care directive, HIPAA authorization form(s), nomination of guardians for minor children, and a certificate of trust. In order to best complete these documents, you should begin to think about your estate, your division of property, your children, etc. This site will post other guides that will ask more specific questions, but you have taken your first step in planning for death by looking into what is necessary to write your estate plan. Estate planning is the most important step you can take to insure your family and property are managed according to your wishes in the event of your death.