Creating an estate plan is one of the best ways to protect your property and provide for your loved ones if the worst should happen. It allows you to provide for your children, protect your property and give you peace of mind.
Whether you have an estate plan in place already or you have yet to write one, taking the time to write or review your plan when you are in your 40s gives you the chance to create a plan that reflects your life today. Why should you revisit estate planning in your 40s?
You may not have an estate plan yet.
Many people assume that estate planning is only for retirees, and if you do not have an estate plan in place by your 40s you are not alone. AARP reports that fewer than half of people in their 40s have an estate plan. If you were to pass away, the court would determine what will happen to your property. Estate planning allows you to choose who will receive your property, care for your children and more.
Your family may have changed.
It is also important to remember that as you get older, your family may change significantly. You may have married, divorced or even remarried. You may have underage children and want to name a guardian for them in your will or create a more comprehensive plan to provide for them. You may have children that you had earlier in your life may be entering the workforce as adults. Even if you already have an estate plan, you may want to adjust that plan to reflect your family today.
You probably have greater responsibilities.
As you grow older, you have more responsibilities to navigate. It especially important to establish a power of attorney to meet these responsibilities and protect your financial and medical health. Medical power of attorney allows someone you trust to make important decisions about your healthcare if an illness or accident leaves you unable to make those choices yourself. Financial power of attorney allows your agent to pay bills, apply for benefits, buy or sell property, pay your taxes and make investments.
You may have more property.
You have spent years building your career, you may have purchased a house and you might even have inherited money from a loved one. This may mean that you need to explore new estate planning strategies to protect your assets from estate taxes and other future concerns.
If you wonder whether your estate plan fits your life and your family today, speak to an estate planning attorney about your needs. They can help you choose the tools that will support your loved ones no matter what the future brings.