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Avoid These Costly Estate Planning Pitfalls

Posted on in Estate Planning

mistakes-man-upset-planning-failure.jpgThe true purpose of estate planning is to protect your assets and to provide for your family- even after you pass away. Planning for your future now can save your loved ones months of frustration and uncertainty in the future. There exists some misinformation regarding estate planning, and this can lead to mistakes. Those who are not aware of all their estate planning choices and the benefits and drawbacks of each choice may not be informed enough to avoid these common missteps.

Overlooking Living Trusts

Assuming that a last will and testament is the best choice for distributing assets after death is a common oversight. Although a will is more common, a revocable living trust may be the better option for some. A revocable living trust is a legal arrangement created to hold ownership of an individual's assets—similar to a will. However, assets left through a living trust do not have to pass through probate, which is the court system designed to prove the validity of a will. Probate can be lengthy and also makes the content of a will public information. The information contained in living trusts does not have to go through probate and stays private.

Not Keeping Plans Updated

Another mistake people make is not updating their estate planning documents periodically. Ideally, estate plans should be updated every three to five years to confirm that decisions regarding trustees, executors, guardians, beneficiaries and healthcare agents are still appropriate. Changes in life circumstances such as divorce, remarriage, a new baby, relocation, or changes to tax laws should be reflected in your estate plans as well.

Not Planning for Disability or Incapacitation

An unexpected or long-term disability can often have tremendous consequences on your personal and financial matters. Although it is not pleasant to think about the possibility of mental or physical incapacitation when you are healthy, doing so can help you ensure your wishes and desires will be followed in the event that you cannot make choices for yourself. Decisions such as who will manage your finances, raise your children, or make healthcare decisions on your behalf must made before you are no longer able to make those decisions. Many find that appointing a power of attorney and/or creating a living trust allow them to protect their interests in the unfortunate case that they become disabled.

Lombard Estate Planning Attorneys

If you are ready to start planning for you and your family’s future through an estate plan, contact an experienced Lombard estate planning attorney at A. Traub & Associates for help. Schedule your confidential consultation at any of our three convenient locations by calling 630-426-0196 today.

 

Sources:

http://www.investmentnews.com/gallery/20171003/PHOTOGALLERY/100309999/PH/11-biggest-estate-planning-mistakes

https://money.usnews.com/investing/investing-101/articles/2017-10-23/7-estate-planning-mistakes-you-cant-afford-to-make

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