It’s important to prepare for the future – whatever that may bring. One way you can do this is by making an estate plan. An estate plan helps ensure your assets are prepared for distribution after you pass according to your wishes and protects your family.
Unfortunately, there are a lot of misconceptions about estate planning. Here are some common of the most common myths about estate planning debunked:
Myth #1: It’s better to die without an estate plan
Truth: Dying without an estate plan is called dying “intestate.” When that happens the state will step in to distribute your assets. While this may seem easier than making an estate plan, it will very likely mean that your last wishes won’t be met. It will also delay access to your estate, which could make things financially difficult for your loved ones.
Myth #2: You can avoid probate with a will
Truth: Probate is a process that allows the executor of the estate to validate and review a will. They have to do several things in preparation for asset distribution. If you want to avoid probate, there are other estate planning strategies to use, like trusts.
Myth #3: You don’t need an estate plan when you’re young
Truth: Many people don’t make estate plans when they’re young because they don’t have many assets. However, an estate plan can also include things like a power of attorney – where you designate an agent to act on your behalf for all financial and medical decisions if you’re incapacitated. You can also designate a guardian for your minor children.
Myth #4: Estate planning is for the rich
Truth: People often make estate plans regardless of their wealth. Many people want to be sure their family and loved ones are cared for after their passing. Another benefit of an estate plan is to ensure everything is prepared for your passing so your family and loved ones aren’t left to do while grieving.
Myth #5: It’s better to use online estate planning templates
Truth: While the estate planning templates you find online may be faster and cheaper than reaching out for legal help, they may also be highly inaccurate. An online template may include factual errors. Even one grammatical mistake could create legal issues with an estate plan.