Estate planning provides the opportunity to review and account for all assets. Most people have plans that include tangible forms of property, retirement accounts, stocks, bonds and business interests. But did they remember to include digital assets?
Those who are looking to bequest collectibles within an estate plan are wise to have an accurate appraisal completed for the items. Getting an accurate appraisal for these keepsakes can be difficult.
Control. This is arguably the most well-known reason to get a will. Those who create a will can control how assets are distributed. Without this document, the state will decide how these assets are distributed.
Choosing a guardian for your child is difficult. The process is more than just a legal decision, it is full of emotion. It is often tempting to delay the conversation — especially when everyone is young and in good health. However, as noted in our last post, an estate plan is important for everyone, even young families. This decision is more than just a box to check off a to-do list, it is an important step towards ensuring the future well being of your family.
Estate planning is not just for senior citizens or those preparing for retirement. Three reasons even young families need an estate plan include:
The major holiday gift giving period is largely over. Hopefully you got all that you hoped for. In some families, some fun may have been had by exchanging so-called white elephant gifts. What that means is that someone might have wound up with one of late Uncle Murd's special collectibles, like the "Oh, So Comfy" Dachshund plate.
December offers many opportunities for family to gather and celebrate the holiday season. It's also a time when adult children, dispersed by life's demands, often return under the same roof as their aging parents. While it's still wise to avoid discussing politics and religion at the table, it can be the perfect time to bring up practical issues concerning plans for the future.
There are a few things required to justify creating an asset protection plan. Contrary to what most people think, being as rich as a Rockefeller is not one of them. More important is to appreciate that life is about more than the here and now. If you are married, with or without children, you can make creating an inheritable legacy through various legal tools part of a comprehensive estate plan. If you are single, a trust could help cover your financial needs in old age.
When you think of collectors the first thing that might come to mind is art. Stamps or coins might surface next, along with comic books, cars and baseball cards. But anything can be the object of personal passion. What qualifies can seem odd to others, but to the one doing the collecting, the process is one that feeds his or her joy.
Do you ever think about what your legacy will be? Legacy is commonly defined as, "a gift by will, especially of money or other personal property." But legacy includes much more, such as the values you live by and that you want to convey to future generations.