STOP PROCRASTINATING: 4 TIPS TO GETTING STARTED ON YOUR ESTATE PLAN
“Creating my estate plan, that’s something I can do tomorrow, right? Or maybe next week… hmm… I’m a bit busy this month… maybe next month… or whenever I get to it…”
We know that no one likes planning for their estate. It’s not the most enjoyable experience. However, not creating an estate plan is extremely dangerous. It can seriously upset your family and ruin relationships. It will also lead to extra costs for your family that could have been avoided. It isn’t always easy to get started on your estate plan, but sometimes you just need to bite the bullet and get it done.
Talk to Your Family
Estate planning is not something that you should be doing on your own. Of course, your desires and opinions are the most important part of creating an estate plan, but your family and loved ones input can be beneficial as well. Listen to what is important to your family members and how you can adjust your desires work with what they want.
Schedule an Appointment with an Attorney
Your attorney will be your most valuable asset throughout the estate planning process. Make sure that you find an experienced lawyer with a history in probate law. A lawyer is a necessity during the estate planning process. They understand the best way to write a will or set up a trust so that there is no confusion in the way that the estate plan is set.
Do Not Cancel Your Appointment
This may seem like a “no duh” tip, but you would be shocked to know how often this happens. So often, individuals get close to the time of their appointment and they begin to get nervous. We know that writing your estate plan can be a bit scary. As they get closer to the day of their appointment. Things start to “come up”, a friend asks them out for lunch, or they are going on vacation, or some other excuse. Creating your estate plan is the most important thing that you can do. There are very few things that should take precedence over your appointment with your lawyer. Now we do understand that sometimes emergencies come up and you NEED to cancel your appointment. If this is the case, schedule a new appointment right when you are canceling it.
Don’t Forget to Check In!
This isn’t a procrastinating tip per se, but it is still vitally important. Many individuals think that estate planning is a “one and done” situation, but this most certainly is not the case. People’s situations change all the time, and their estate plan needs to change with them. Let’s say that you made a wise investment and your estate massively grows in between the time that you wrote your estate plan. This can complicate everything for your heirs. There are some instances where your family situations change and new children or grandchildren are born and they need to be included in the estate plan. It is always good to talk with your estate planning attorney every 5 years or so to discuss your estate plan and make any necessary amendments.
Creating your estate plan may not be the most enjoyable experience, but it is better to just get it done so that you have one less thing to worry about. A qualified lawyer makes the entire experience easier to deal with. They will keep you confident throughout the entire process.