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3 Tips for Getting Started With Estate Planning

3 Tips for Getting Started With Estate Planning
Posted By: Anica Oaks on February 15, 2022

Estate planning is one of the most important parts of managing your finances. Despite this fact, many people either never put an estate plan in place or wait too long to create a comprehensive one. Part of the problem is that most people just don't know where to begin. Here are three tips that will help you get started with the estate planning process.

Decide Who Should Receive Money From Your Estate

The first step in deciding how your estate should be dealt with is figuring out who will benefit from it. Children, immediate relatives, close friends and favored charitable organizations are all common beneficiaries. Deciding who receives what from your estate in advance will make it much easier to put the details together in a formal estate plan.

Consult a Certified Estate Planner

Although having some details figured out in advance will streamline the process, the most important part of estate planning is to sit down with an expert. A certified estate planner can help you with everything from making your financial arrangements to planning for tax implications. In many cases, estate planners are also practicing attorneys. Wilson Law Group, LLC, for instance, offers estate planning services. You can also find estate planning services through your financial advisor or wealth manager. From there, you can create a detailed plan for your estate and establish any necessary trusts.

Revisit and Review Your Plan

Estate planning is an ongoing process, not a one-time event. To make sure your plan continues to meet your needs, you should revisit it periodically and see if anything needs to be changed. This is especially true if your wealth is still growing in retirement, since larger sums of money may introduce additional tax complexities or allow you to be more generous with posthumous donations.

You should also review your plan with your beneficiaries from time to time. Knowing exactly what's in the plan and what each person receives will prevent family disputes when it comes time to execute your will. It will also make it easier for your relatives to navigate your estate plan when the time comes.

Estate planning can be intimidating, but the process itself is actually quite straightforward. Deciding how you want your estate disposed of and enlisting the help of a professional estate planner will let you get a plan in place with minimal difficulty. After that, it's just a matter of keeping the plan updated and ensuring your heirs know how to best honor your final wishes.

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