Why should I get an estate plan?

Estate planning is how you control what happens to your property, legal rights, and health care in the future. It’s not just about who gets your money—it’s about providing for your family and giving them the tools they might need to care for you.

There are many different reasons you might get an estate plan. Here are the most common ones I see. Chances are, at least one of these reasons applies to you.

Name guardians for your kids

If you have young children, you should name who will care for them if you can’t—and who should not care for them.

Prevent a teenager from squandering the inheritance

A young beneficiary will get full control of their inheritance at age 18 unless you do something about it with a will or trust. Most of my clients don’t want a child or grandchild to have full control until the more responsible age of 25 or 30.

Avoid the second marriage property split

If you don’t have a will and you have children from a prior relationship, your property will be split between your spouse and your children at your death.

Disinherit someone

If you want to make sure a certain person does not get anything, you must act.

Provide for a disabled beneficiary

If your child is disabled, you need to plan who will manage their inheritance and how to avoid endangering their benefits.

Name someone to make financial, legal, and health care decisions for you

Your spouse does not automatically get legal authority to make decisions for you. Without planning, your family could be forced into court for guardianship—a costly and burdensome process.

Reduce the time and cost of settling your final affairs for your family

After a loved one dies, settling all the legal and financial affairs can be difficult. Estate planning can make it simpler, cheaper, and quicker.

Protect your property

Your property can be vulnerable to creditors, lawsuits, and medical bills. If you need long-term care in your old age, it can deplete your savings quickly. It’s possible to protect assets from these risks by using trusts.