One of the most common reasons why people fail to put an estate plan in place prior to their death is due to the misunderstanding of what constitutes an “Estate”. For many, the word “estate” invokes an image of grandeur or extreme wealth. Many people mistakenly believe that their property, tangible or intangible, is insufficient to be deemed an “Estate”. Thus, they believe they do not have an Estate so to warrant any planning. The reality, however, is that everyone has an estate: It is all of your property including but not limited to your clothes, books, tools, papers, your bank accounts, house and anything else in which you have an interest.
Another common reason why people fail to put an estate plan in place prior to their death is due to the misunderstanding of what can be achieved with “Estate Planning”. The “Planning” for any estate includes the systematic development and redevelopment of goals, policies and procedures pursuant to your wishes. Estate Planning can be defined as follows: “the systematic development and redevelopment of goals, policies and procedures for all the property one owns, has an interest in, whatever it is worth, and wherever it is located.
Among the many benefits of planning, Estate Planning enables you to do the following:
- Preserve your estate for your spouse and heirs.
- Retain control of your property as long as possible.
- Define your healthcare wishes upon your incapacity.
- Make provision for disabled heirs.
- Direct who will receive your estate.
- Clearly provide when and how much they will receive.
- Avoid unnecessary fees, costs, and commissions.
- Minimize Estate Taxes.
- Pass on your values to the next generation.
- Incentivize beneficiaries
The bottom line is that almost everyone has an “Estate” worthy of “Estate Planning”. “Estate Planning” enables you to gain control of what will happen to your property upon death and or incapacity.
Empower yourself tomorrow, in the face of the inevitable, by putting an Estate Plan in place today.