Surveys that are conducted show that most people in the United States do not have estate plans in place. Obviously, dying is at the bottom of your to do list. You may not want to think about it until you are an elder and the reality of it is staring you in the face.
This is not hard to understand, everybody dies, and most people have assets. It is just a fact of life, and you should take it seriously because there are no guarantees. People pass away at all ages every day, and their families are forced to deal with the emotional and financial fallout.
Talk to a Lawyer
When you finally decide it is time to create a plan, you should discuss your situation with an estate planning lawyer for one simple reason.
You know how to do your job, and people that are not in that line of work do not. Since they don’t have any reason to understand how you do what you do, they don’t bother to look into it.
This makes total sense, and this applies to you and everyone else. If you need some plumbing work done, you are going to call a plumber, plain and simple.
When you plan your estate, you should work with somebody that understands all the different approaches that someone could take. The right way to go about it will depend on a lot of factors, so there is no one-size-fits-all estate plan that will work for everyone.
Things to Think About
Your family and your financial situation will have a lot to do with the way you should plan your estate. If you own your own business, your intentions may be a bit complicated.
For example, let’s say that you have a son and daughter. Your son has worked with you in your business all of his life. Your daughter, on the other hand, went in a different direction. The business is your most valuable asset by far, and you are going to leave it to your son.
Where does that leave your daughter? The value of the business itself is one thing, but will it continue to generate revenue, and will the property value increase. Your grandchildren will also enter the picture at some point. And consider if you have a business partner?
Another tricky situation is estate planning for a blended family. If you have children from another marriage when you get remarried, how can you protect their inheritances?
Estate planning for married couples is another situation that calls for a certain type of planning. Young families should have plans in place to protect dependent children, and there is a proper way to go about it.
These are just a couple of examples, but there are many others.
Another benefit that you gain when you establish a relationship with an estate planning lawyer is the familiarity factor. If you have a major life event such as remarriage or an addition or subtraction to your family, your attorney will have an understanding of you and your intentions.
They will be able to learn about your new situation and suggest the right revisions. As time goes on, you can always get back with your lawyer to make changes whenever they are necessary.
All of this can come full circle if you plan your estate correctly. You can work up an agreement with your attorney to assist your family after you pass away. The lawyer will fully understand your wishes, and they will know how to handle the government requirements.
An attorney has something called a “fiduciary relationship” with their clients. This relationship requires the attorney to act in the best interest of their clients. As a result, you will feel confident knowing that your attorney will make sure your estate is handled correctly.
Access Our Free Worksheet!
We have created an estate planning worksheet that you can go through to learn more about this important process. It is free, and you can visit our worksheet access page to get your copy.
Need Help Now?
Our doors are open if you are ready to work with an Oklahoma City estate planning lawyer to develop a plan that is ideal for you and your family. You can send us a message to request a consultation appointment, and we can be reached by phone at 405-843-6100.