Estate Planning: When To Start & What to Include

No matter how old you are, if you’re an adult, you need to have a plan for your estate. Estate planning helps to ensure that your wishes are carried out. At different points in your life, your estate plan will look different. Here is when to start and what to include.

Estate Planning When You Are in Your 20s and 30s:

In your 20s and 30s, you might think that estate planning is way off the radar but you need to be prepared for the unexpected. When creating your estate plan in your 20s and 30s make sure to include:

  • Power of Attorney
    • The person that that will take care of the financial and legal aspects of your life in the case that you cannot do it yourself. If there is no Power of Attorney in place then your family might have to go to court to be able to handle your financial assets.
  • Healthcare Power of Attorney
    • The document that names the person that will make your medical treatment decisions if you are not able to do so.
  • Will
  • If you have children: a trust
  • Advance Directives
    • This is also known as a living will. It is a document that will be important if you are terminally ill or if you are in a vegetative state where you can’t communicate your wishes about your life care and life-prolonging procedures.

Estate Planing When You Are In Your 40s:

When you are in your 40s you have changed a lot since your 20s and your 30s. You most likely are married, have kids, and have more money than you did before. Estate planning in your 40s will include the same things as it did in your 20s and 30s but you’ll want to make sure you flesh out plans for your kids if something happens to you. At this age, you will want to talk to your parents about what their estate planning looks like. This is a good time to consider a revocable living trust.

Estate Planning When You Are In Your 50s and 60s:

Now that you are older, you will want to go back and look at your estate plans. This is the time to update any Power of Attorneys and Advance Directives. This is also the time to carefully consider creating a revocable living trust. A revocable living trust is a document that allows your loved ones to avoid the probate process when you die. Trusts help preserve your assets and make sure that your wishes are carried out in the most efficient way possible.

Think it’s time to get started on your estate plan? At Smith Barid we are here to help you get started no matter your age. We can customize your plan to make sure it works for you. Call us today: 912-352-3999


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