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Estate Planning Explained

Published on April 17th, 2018

You may have heard of estate planning as something you must do at one point or another in your lifetime. This process can help carry on your legacy by assigning what is to be done and who is the get your belongings after you have passed. An estate planning attorney understands this can be an emotional task, and can help you get things going.

Here we have listed various topics to help you get an overall idea of what estate planning is, before you dive right in. For more information, we are happy to schedule a consultation about estate planning.

Why an Estate Plan is Needed

Most people assume their state laws will distribute their assets and property to family members accordingly. While this can be true to a certain extent, not creating an estate plan can mean you are giving up some of your rights. A properly written estate plan can help make sure your wishes are being carried on, preventing legal disputes and reducing a significant amount of stress for your family as they are grieving their loss.

What to Incorporate into an Estate Plan

When writing an estate plan, think about what you would like each family member to receive in the event of your passing. This can be a difficult thing to imagine, but it is important to start thinking about this now. You can begin by brainstorming and making a list of how you want assets distributed based on what matters most to you. Also, you will want to appoint a representative or agent to handle your estate plan. Their responsibility is to handle the wishes you describe in the estate plan documents.

Important Documents to Include

In addition to your will, you want to gather legal documents related to preferred medical treatments and prolonging care in the event you are not able to make those decisions at the time for yourself.

A Living Will Document

A living will is another key document to include in your estate plan. This document describes how you feel about life-sustaining medical treatments, if you somehow become unable to communicate them yourself. It will inform your family as to what extent of these prolonging measures you want used in order to keep you alive, and if you prefer to be an organ donor or not.

Role in Power of Attorney

A power of attorney is when you choose an agent or representative to make financial choices if or when you are not able to. This document lists exactly what actions your power of attorney is permitted to do if you were to become incapacitated. Some examples of such actions can involve:

  • Writing checks
  • Fund deposits
  • Business decisions
  • Selling property or vehicles

Many people who try to begin writing an estate plan on their own start to realize how complex and sensitive such a task can be. We can help guide the process as you assign beneficiaries and what they are to receive after your passing. In the event you have any more questions, do not hesitate to contact an attorney, like an estate planning attorneys Ridgefield, CT needs, to ensure that you are getting the service you deserve.

Thank you to Sweeney Legal for providing their insight on estate planning.

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