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Some tips on creating and managing your estate planning

It can be a very uncomfortable conversation with family members to talk about your future with regards to your health and how it pertains to a living will, as well as the future of your finances when your day comes. Preparing yourself for the inevitable, whether it is a day, week, year or decades from now will not only put your mind at ease, but will make things far easier for your family and friends when the time comes. Below please find some tips on how to solidify your estate plans so that all parties, including your family and the courts are aware of your wishes.

Three things that everyone should have is a will, a living will, and a document describing your wishes with regards to your dependents. As we have reminded you before, one never knows when their day is up, and tomorrow’s are never guaranteed. It isn’t intended to leave you feeling dark and dreary, but to encourage you, if you haven’t already, to seriously think about the future, and how everyone in your family would be affected if you are gone earlier than expected.

A master document is a good way to have one all-inclusive collection of your accounts and balances. This will make things easier for someone in the future who may need to go through your information. Ideally, this document will contain all your appropriate accounts including both assets and debts, as well as copies of other important documents such as your will, and living trust, if available.

Creating these documents typically require some expert advice. Failing to properly formulate the information with regards to your estate planning may lead to confusion and conflict at a time when that is least appropriate. Preparing now can help avoid issues for your dependents and family later in life when you are no longer able to make these decisions yourself.

Source: US News, “4 Steps for Simple Estate Planning“, By Trent Hamm, Dec. 17, 2013

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