When you are deciding on how to start estate planning, you may feel that every estate plan is the same. That could not be further from the truth. The reality is that all estate plans are different, and it’s important to find the right estate plan for your situation.
Did you know that around 57 percent of consumers in America don’t have a will? On top of that, around 69 percent of parents who have children under 18 don’t have wills, either. This frightening, because the individuals those people love and want to protect may suffer if their loved ones do not arrange their estate plans in time.
What kind of estate plan do you need and when?
Estate plans may change over time. For example, if you are under the age of 30 and have no spouse or children, you may not have an estate plan yet. It’s still a good idea to have a basic will, even if you have very little to leave behind. If you happen to have a family or spouse, then having an estate plan and will in place will help protect your spouse and guarantee that your siblings, parents and others are taken care of per your wishes.
If you’re living with a partner but aren’t married, a will is even more important. If you die and don’t have a will, your partner may not receive anything. All of your property will move through intestacy laws, and your property will go to your family members. You can also look into having joint tenancy with the right of survivorship with a partner if you don’t intend to marry but want to protect their right to property.
By the time you have children, you need to have a will that appoints a guardian. You might think you don’t need a will, because the likelihood of you and your spouse dying at the same time is low. However, it does happen, and you want to know that your children will be taken care of by the people you trust.
You also need a will so that your property will pass on to your spouse and children correctly. If property passes directly to young children, they may have control over funds they don’t fully understand, which could mean that they spend it in inappropriate ways.
Every person has a different situation, so every will and estate plan will vary. Your attorney will help you build the plan that is right for you.