If you have an estate plan or will established, you’re already miles ahead of most of the country. Despite the obvious advantages of wills and estate planning, most people still do not have them. For some individuals, estate planning is simply not a priority, while others feel that they are too young, or that estate planning is something other people do.
However, while it is good to be on the path to sound estate planning, it is always wise to consider how airtight your estate plan truly is. A faulty estate plan can be very costly, and end up bringing greater grief to your survivors rather than simplifying matters when your time comes.
If you think your estate plan may need a fresh coat of paint and a tune-up, you can familiarize yourself with some common estate planning errors and consult with an estate planning attorney to identify ways to strengthen your particular plan.
Is your estate plan updated?
For many aging individuals, an estate plan reflects their state of mind from a number of years ago, when they first created it. However, life brings big changes all the time, and often when you least expect them. If you have not reviewed the terms of your estate plan recently, it’s always wise to look under the hood and make sure that everything in the plan is still what you want.
If you experienced a large increase or decrease in income or assets, or if you’ve gained or lost beneficiaries since you created the plan, it should reflect these changes.
Are you confident in your estate executor?
When you create an estate plan, you might name a convenient person as your executor, only to later on realize that they are simply not the right person for the job. If you have not considered your executor in a while, or if the person you named initially is no longer able to properly perform those duties, be sure to address this in your plan.
Have you planned for disability?
This is a much more complicated area than one could hope to address in a blog, because there are so many factors to consider that differ from individual to individual. If you have not yet made arrangements to deal with your own possible disability or end-of-life needs, you should not hesitate to reach out to an estate planning attorney and examine your estate planning options.
An estate plan can help protect you and the ones you love even before you pass away, but it is only as strong as the intent and attention that you devote to it. Don’t miss a great opportunity to revisit your estate plan and make sure that it is truly working to protect your interests and legacy.