Everyone should have an estate plan. However, many people die without ever giving an estate plan a single thought. This is often because people are left with many unanswered questions about estate planning.
If you’re planning on making an estate plan, then you likely have a lot of questions. The following are many common questions answered at your convenience:
#1. What’s in an estate plan?
An estate plan is the anticipatory organization of your assets to be distributed to beneficiaries in preparation for your passing. Within it is the itemization of your assets, heirs, a designated executor of the estate and power of attorney and, finally, your funeral wishes.
#2. What’s an executor of the estate?
An executor of the estate is a representative who ensures your assets are protected and finalizes many legal documents after your death. They are largely important in processing your estate, ensuring taxes, debts and bills are paid and distributing your assets after probate.
#3. What happens during probate?
Your estate plan has to be verified after your death, which is done during probate. Your estate plan will be verified to ensure it is authentic. After probate is over, which may take up to a year, then your beneficiaries will inherit assets from your estate.
#4. Can you avoid probate?
You can’t avoid probate by having a will alone. Instead, many people create trusts to avoid probate. This way, your heirs can instantly inherit from your estate and circumvent estate taxes.
#5. What’s a power of attorney?
A power of attorney is a representative who makes decisions on your behalf if you’re incapacitated. They make financial and medical decisions in your best interest with the hopes that you recover from a catastrophic injury or medical illness.
#6. Should you seek legal help?
Making an estate plan is a complicated process. Many people believe they can write their own estate plan and expect it to work. However, this often leads to many disputes and unsatisfied heirs.
When making an estate plan, you may need to consider reaching out for legal help.