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Things to consider when creating your first estate plan

It doesn't matter why you are creating your first estate plan at the present time, it's important that you know exactly what you are doing every step of the way.

If you realize that now is the time to tackle this important task, don't put it off any longer. Once you have an estate plan in place, you'll feel much better about everything the future will bring.

Like many, you may not have a clear idea of the details to consider when creating your first estate plan. You have never done this in the past, so you don't know which steps to take in the future. That's okay. Many people before you have been in the same position, with most finding a way to figure things out in a timely manner.

Here are a few of the most important details to consider when creating your first estate plan:

-- Will or trust? There are benefits of both a will and trust. You need to decide early on which type of estate planning document you will use to ensure that your assets reach the appropriate person (or people) upon your death.

-- A guardian for your minor children. Do you have a child or children under the age of 18? Who will watch after your child in the event that you and the other parent both pass on? Naming a guardian is one of the most important aspects of creating an estate plan.

-- Naming an executor of your will or trustee. When you pass on, somebody must take on the process of administering your will or trust. When naming an executor or trustee, don't make a final decision until you are 100 percent confident that the person has what it takes to do the job.

While these are among the most important things to consider when creating your first estate plan, there are sure to be other details that move to the forefront.

When you work closely with an estate planning attorney, you'll feel better about your ability to make decisions that put your mind at ease. A legal professional can answer your questions, provide guidance and make sure that you never overlook an important detail that could impact you and/or your family now or in the future.

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