4 Essentials for Your Estate Plan
Creating an estate plan is vital for the future success of your family and your assets. Here are four essentials that you should include in your own estate plan:
- Will: If you don’t have a written will, your state has an intestacy or inheritance statute. Most individuals, though, prefer to have a say in the disposition of assets, so make sure you have a will and review it every five years or following major life events.
- Durable Power of Attorney: This document designates an individual to conduct business for you, make gifts, conduct financial transactions and the like. Include successor designees in the event the named individual is unable to perform the role.
- Advanced Medical Directive: Legal professionals often bundle together a Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care along with a Living Will (directions for final care and wishes) into a single document called an Advanced Medical Directive.
- Financial Go-Bag: Regardless of the size of your estate, everyone needs a spot to organize all of their financial information. Besides basic items, such as birthdates, Social Security or military information, include tax records, banking, investment, insurance, business and real estate information. Don’t forget to include copies of the documents mentioned earlier and keep all of this in a secure location where family members or trusted individuals can locate.