Inheritance planning is the process of preparing for the transfer of your assets after your passing. It is an important yet often overlooked aspect of financial planning. Here are ten top tips to help you plan your estate effectively.
1.) Start Early: Don’t delay inheritance planning until your retirement years. Unexpected events can happen at any time. Having a plan in place provides peace of mind for you and your loved ones.
2.) Draft a Will: A will is a fundamental part of an estate plan. It can outline how you wish to distribute your assets. It may also include guardian nominations for minor children.
3.) Consider a Trust: Trusts are not just for the wealthy. They offer benefits like avoiding probate, maintaining privacy, protection for spendthrifts, and providing for minors or special needs dependents.
4.) Update Beneficiary Designations: Your assets with designated beneficiaries, like life insurance policies and retirement accounts, will be passed on irrespective of your will. Ensure these designations are current and align with your overall estate plan.
5.) Appoint a Power of Attorney: A durable power of attorney (POA) is a legal document that allows a trusted individual to manage your financial affairs if you become incapacitated. It’s an essential tool to ensure your affairs are handled according to your wishes.
6.) Create a Living Will and Health Care Proxy: A living will is used to record your life support utilization choices. These choices will be honored if you cannot communicate. A healthcare proxy or medical power of attorney designates someone to make medical decisions on your behalf.
7.) Inventory Your Assets: Make a detailed list of your assets. This should include bank accounts, real estate, investments, and valuable personal items. Regular updates ensure your estate plan reflects your current asset portfolio.
8.) Consider Possible Estate Taxes: If your estate will be valued in the millions, it may be subject to the federal estate tax. Consult with an estate planning attorney to explore strategies to minimize this tax burden.
9.) Don’t Forget Digital Assets: From social media accounts to digital financial assets like cryptocurrencies, ensure your estate plan addresses these digital assets.
10.) Consult a Professional: Estate planning can be complex. An estate planning attorney can help navigate the legal intricacies.
Remember, estate planning is a dynamic process that should evolve with your life. Regularly review and update your estate plan to ensure it remains aligned with your circumstances and wishes. By taking the time to create and maintain a comprehensive estate plan, you can protect your legacy and provide peace of mind for your loved ones.
Attend a Free Educational Seminar!
We are happy to be able to pass along information in writing on this blog. In addition, we offer other written resources on our site that you can access at any time. This is the first step. If you want to take your knowledge to another level, we have some great opportunities for you.
Our firm conducts seminars on an ongoing basis, and this is a fantastic way to make an initial connection with us. We go over some very important details that everyone is interested in, and the information is presented in a down-to-earth, easy-to-understand manner.
There is no charge to attend these seminars, but we do ask that you register in advance so we can reserve your spot. You can see the dates and obtain registration information if you head over to our Oklahoma City estate planning seminar page.
Need Help Now?
If you have already learned enough to know that it is time for you to work with an attorney to put a plan in place, our doors are open. You can call us at 918-615-2700 to set up a consultation at our Tulsa estate planning office, and the number for our Oklahoma City location is 405-843-6100.
If you would rather send us a message, fill out our contact form and we will get back in touch with you promptly.