Questions may come up regarding when it is a good time to take part in estate planning. Some Georgia residents might wonder if they need a certain net worth before taking concrete steps. In truth, anyone could launch into estate planning at any time. There’s no “bad time” to make arrangements, but those approaching retirement age should move ahead without delays.
The elements of estate planning and their benefits
Estate planning involves performing legal actions to deal with a person’s responsibilities related to assets, health care and more. Most people think estate planning involves wills, trusts and probate exclusively. These things factor prominently in estate planning, but they are not the only components. For example, crafting a power of attorney contract could be vital for some individuals. Financial and health care-oriented power of attorney forms allow the grantor to designate an agent to make medical decisions. When a person is incapacitated, such documents might save time, money and aggravation.
Ultimately, without the appropriate documents in place, a person’s wishes might not be carried out as preferred. When someone dies without a will, intestate laws govern the probate court’s determinations. That might not be what the testator or beneficiaries want. Creating a will allows someone to divide an estate to his or her specific wishes.
Estate planning involves evaluating the different tools available and thinking things through. For example, maybe a revocable trust would be better than a will. Trusts can help beneficiaries avoid probate while giving the grantor more decision-making power.
Moving forward with estate planning steps
As someone ages and nears retirement, putting together an estate plan might become a priority. People may become more aware of their mortality when they age, prompting them to write a will. Older individuals could suffer from medical issues, and having a health care proxy or power of attorney document in place could make things easier.
With that said, estate planning is not limited to retirees. As long as someone is of legal age, it is possible to launch estate planning arrangements. Even someone with few assets could benefit from the process.
An attorney may help clients write legally sound estate documents. The attorney might advise on tax issues and other estate matters as well.