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Is it time to prepare for your estate planning meeting?

Perhaps you have decided now is the time to tackle estate planning; you have put it off long enough.

What is your game plan? Which estate planning tools best address your situation? With an idea in mind and a little advance preparation, the task will be much less stressful and time-consuming than you anticipate.

Considering basic options

If you are married with children, what happens to your kids if you and your spouse should die in an accident? If you are not married, but in a relationship, how will you ensure your partner is legally able to receive your assets or administer your estate in the event of your death? Without a will, the state will decide the fate of your children. It will not recognize your partner, so the legal course of action would be to distribute your assets to your biological family members.

Protection for emergencies

Estate planning can also give you peace of mind while you are still alive. For example, you can create a medical power of attorney in which you name someone you trust to make medical decisions for you if you should become incapacitated. At the same time, the person you name in a financial power of attorney can legally step in to manage your financial affairs. If you recover, you simply take back the reins and carry on.

Making decisions

Estate planning is important for anyone at any age. Whether you are a millennial or a retiree, whether you have few assets or a great many, you can build an estate plan tailored to your needs. You may only want a will at this time, or perhaps a will and power of attorney. On the other hand, you may want to look into establishing a trust. Perhaps one of your major goals is to minimize estate taxes. In any case, you want whatever assets you own to be distributed as you direct when you pass on. Preparing a game plan for your estate planning meeting will be the first step toward achieving your goals.

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