The world of estate planning is full of myths and misinformation which if acted upon can drastically impact your future. If you have considered starting or updating your estate plan but were dissuaded by a piece of concerning information, it may be time to reconsider. Below our blog outlines and dispels some of the most common myths surrounding the estate planning process.
- I don’t have an estate: The idea of an “estate” can call to mind extravagant mansions, luxury vehicles, and expensive antiques. However, the truth is that everyone has an estate made up of their assets, legal rights, and entitlements. Decisions regarding what happens to your children, who makes choices for you should you become incapacitated, and how your belongings are distributed can all be set in your plan. If you’ve never given it a second thought, you may be surprised to discover what you hold in your estate.
- I am too young: It is never too early to begin planning for the future. While it may be difficult to think about what will happen in the event that a tragedy befalls us, having a plan in place is crucial. Without a detailed plan, your loved ones may have the enormous responsibility of determining what your wishes might have been. This is a responsibility that they may not be equipped to handle without time to prepare. In this way, creating a plan is something that is done for your loved ones and inheritors as well as for the peace of mind it can bring.
- My will takes care of everything: While a will is one of the most common estate planning documents, it is only a small part of a complete plan. It is true that a will can dictate what happens to your property, name an executor, and name guardians for children; however, there is much a will cannot do. It cannot leave burial instructions, avoid probate, set certain conditions on asset transfers, or reduce certain taxes. Furthermore, a will is a public document and may be viewable by persons who you may not wish to see the details of your estate.
- I don’t need to update my plan: Another common pitfall occurs when a person creates an estate plan and assumes that their responsibilities are complete. Estate planning is an ongoing process; the best plans are constantly evolving and changing with the fluctuations common to life. For example, if you have a child, get married, earn a substantial raise, or experience a death in the family, it may be time to take another look at your plan.
While the points above represent some of the most common myths, this is far from a complete list. Every situation will be unique and questions about what may be best for you should be directed to a knowledgeable attorney.
Questions about Your Estate Plan? Call (720) 809-8310
Whether you are looking to get started on an estate plan or want to update an existing document, Jorgensen Brownell & Pepin P.C is here to help. We understand just how confusing the process can be and our Longmont estate planning attorneys can help you separate fact from fiction. We possess more than two decades of legal experience helping others in your situation and can guide you through every step of the process.
Don’t put off planning for the future. Contact our team today and discover your legal options.