It's a common misconception that people who don't have very much money don't require an estate plan. In fact, there are several barebones components that everybody needs to set up before they pass away in order to make things easier on those they leave behind.
When people get divorced, it often changes multiple aspects of their lives. For instance, if you are planning to divorce, you may have to make certain decisions about what to do with your house in Sandusky or work out a custody plan for the kids. But, when you finally sign those divorce papers, there are still some things you will probably have to attend to as a result of ending your marriage. Primarily, one of the last tasks you need to complete, and definitely should not put off, is making updates to your estate plan.
Generally speaking, a last will or estate plan allows someone with assets to determine how those assets end up divided once he or she dies. For many people, carefully planning this distribution process is part of their final legacy. It can have a profound impact on their loved ones, from children and grandchildren to siblings, friends and even charitable organizations.
To know what estate taxes your estate might end up owing, it's important to be aware of the overall value of your estate. There are two dates which may be able to be used for setting estate value when it comes to the federal estate tax, either the time of your death or (if it would lower estate value) an alternate valuation date. The first is the actual date of death of the individual, while the second is six months following the date of death.
Things change. The people in your life come and go. New children are born, and people pass away. Life is always changing, and because of that, you may need to update your will.
Planning an estate or creating a legally sound last will is a process. Although some people put it off for years, it is wise for anyone who has substantial assets, a dependent spouse or children to create an estate plan and last will as soon as possible. Doing so helps ensure that your loved ones and dependents will have access to resources after your passing. It also safeguards your possessions to go to the people you'd like to have them.
When you're making your estate plan, you may be tempted to "go it on your own" -- perhaps with a do-it-yourself template that allows you to create a last will and testament.
While you might think that estate planning is only for elderly people, this isn't the case. In fact, that thought could seriously affect your children if something happens to you.
Estate planning is typically not something anyone looks forward to doing, however, it is a necessary process in order to protect your legacy. Since none of us know exactly how long we have, it is important to start the process early. By having your financial affairs in order, you will be able to alleviate stress and a possible financial burden for your loved ones.
If you already have an estate plan in place, you might wonder whether you ever need to revisit it. Are there life changes that virtually require a new will?