When Should I Start Creating My Estate Plan?

trusts and wills

Estate planning is an essential component of asset management, as well as ensuring that both you and your loved ones are taken care of after you pass away. However, because many people do not view it as a pressing matter, they don’t end up reaping the many benefits of having a well-rounded estate in place. That said, if the last couple of years has taught us anything, it is that the future is filled with uncertainty. Having the time to organize your assets or talk with your loved ones about certain arrangements is one of the most important benefits of starting an estate plan sooner rather than later. If you’re looking to start crafting your estate plan, simply reach out to the Pennsylvania estate planning attorneys from Friedman Schuman to learn more about your next steps.

Why should I start drafting my estate plan now?

No one wants to think about the worst-case scenario, but it is very important to be prepared for it. Having a valid will or trust will not only ensure that your assets are given to the beneficiaries of your choosing, but it will also help your loved ones avoid any potential legal hurdles. For example, without a legitimate estate plan, your estate will likely be subject to probate court, which can be a lengthy and expensive process for your family to deal with. In probate, the court will distribute your assets based on Pennsylvania state law for intestate succession. This could mean that portions of your estate may be given to recipients that you would not have chosen.

That said, estate planning is not only about asset management; it is also about making sure your wishes are carried out in a variety of scenarios. For instance, if you were to become medically unresponsive for any reason, having specific healthcare directives in place will help your loved ones avoid making any difficult choices on your behalf. Additionally, no matter your age, if you are a parent of a minor child, you will want to create a guardianship. The top priority of any parent is to make sure that their kids are properly taken care of. Ensuring that your children are in the care of people you know and trust will put you, and your spouse, more at ease if anything unfortunate were to happen. Without a specified guardian in your estate plan, a court would have to appoint someone that you may not want to raise your kids.

When crafting your estate plan, it is highly advised to enlist the services of an experienced estate planning lawyer to circumvent any discrepancies that may arise. Friedman Schuman is here to help. Contact us today so we can get started working on your case.

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