When some Virginia residents make estate plans, they do so as a means through which to leave a legacy behind for their children. However, this is not the only argument for creating an estate plan. On the contrary, there are many different benefits that come with having an estate plan in place, and many of them apply regardless of whether you have children.
According to Kiplinger, unless you put together a plan outlining where you want your assets to go after your death, the responsibility of figuring out what to do with your legacy falls on the state. This may result in unnecessary delays and other avoidable hardships. By creating an estate plan during your lifetime, you give yourself a chance to do the following.
Outline your medical preferences
Not having kids does not mean you have no opinions about what happens to you medically, should you become incapacitated. Many people put advance directives into their estate plans that dictate if they want to become organ donors, if they want doctors to keep them alive through artificial means, should the need arise, and so on.
Make distributions to other individuals or entities
An estate plan also allows you to assert where you want your money to end up. If you have no children, you may want to leave your legacy to a close friend or sibling. Conversely, you may decide to leave some or all of it to a charity you supported during your lifetime, among other options.
Ultimately, having an estate plan allows you to maintain control over your personal affairs and assets, even if something unexpected occurs.