Estate planning is not just for people who are retiring or the very wealthy. If you have anything of value, whether it be a car, a home, or a sentimental possession, you will want to ensure they are passed down to your loved ones.
How Do I Start Planning for My Estate?
Before you can start deciding what to do with your estate, you need to think about what assets you might have and how you might use them. Assets include any property you own: cars, bank accounts, and any rights or licenses you have. But, estate planning is more than just the distribution of assets. It encompasses establishing guardianship for minor children and providing instructions for care if you are to become disabled. Once you have a record of all your assets, then you must determine how best to secure and allocate them.
How Do You Create a Will?
Estate plans are more than just wills. They encompass a Last Will and Testament, a Living Will, Healthcare Power of Attorney, Financial Power of Attorney, and a Living Trust. A last will and testament allows you to allocate your assets, assign a guardian for your children, and appoint an executor to carry out your wishes. It can be modified throughout your life. However, it does not help you avoid probate court and it cannot be kept private. Similarly, a trust allows you to set aside your assets but allows you to avoid probate court. A trust is best for assets you want passed along privately and quickly. A living will dictates how you will be cared for if you’re incapacitated and cannot make decisions for yourself. You can also assign a person to make these decisions for you by determining a healthcare power of attorney. If you are incapacitated, you can assign someone to make financial decisions for you.
Who Can OSGroup Help You Plan Your Estate?
Now that you know a bit about estate planning, you might be tempted to start this process on your own. While you may be able to get some of this done yourself, it is best to rely on a professional to ensure your documents are prepared correctly. The experienced CPAs at OSGroup can help you plan for your future with peace of mind. If you’re in the Windham area, call us at (603) 329-6408 today.