Complete some basic estate planning papers immediately, such as a will, a living trust, and a power of attorney.
Nobody likes to think about their own mortality, but taking the time now to fill out some simple paperwork will spare you and your family a lot of grief later. You’ll have greater peace of mind knowing that your desires will be carried out and that your family and friends will be cared for. Continue reading to discover more about the various forms of estate planning and administration paperwork.
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Wills and Testaments
A final will and testament enables you to specify how you want your property and assets distributed after your death. It also specifies who will take guardianship of any young children if neither parent is able to act as guardian. A will may be used to make charitable bequests. Last wills and testaments are simple to write, but they must go through the probate procedure, which might take some time depending on the amount of your estate.
You should revise your will every few years or so, particularly if a big life event occurs, such as a baby, death, marriage, or divorce. If you discover that you don’t need to modify anything about your will, you don’t have to make a new one; instead, you may update your current last will and testament using a codicil.
Will and Testament
A living will is a legal document that specifies your preferences for end-of-life health care choices. It says that you do not wish to receive life-prolonging therapy if there is no possibility of recovery, such as in the case of terminal disease or permanent coma. A living will informs people of your desires when you are unable to articulate them yourself.
The Living Trust
A living trust, like a will, allows you to designate how your assets should be split after your death. You give your property and assets to the trust throughout your lifetime, but they may pass straight to your beneficiaries when you die, bypassing probate. You may also set up a joint living trust with your spouse if you are married.
Deed of Transfer on Death
A transfer on death deed may be used to transfer your house or other property in various states. This saves your beneficiaries from the time-consuming probate procedure. It is not accessible everywhere, so double-check our article “What is a Transfer on Death Deed?” to see whether this form is available where you reside.
Power of Attorney for the Long Term
You may delegate power of attorney to another individual (your agent) in any situation when you are unable to represent your own interests. You may, for example, send an agent to an important meeting that you are unable to attend and have them act on your behalf for the length of the meeting. A durable power of attorney, on the other hand, stays in force even if you become mentally incapacitated. In the event of terminal illness or permanent incapacity, you may leave health care directions for your agent, similar to a living will.