October 15-21 is National Estate Planning Awareness Week, promoting awareness to one of the most overlooked areas of personal financial management.
According to a Forbes.com recent article, “Fact is, in today’s rule bound and litigious society, even an 18-year-old college student still covered by his parents’ health insurance needs to sign a health care proxy (a.k.a. health care power of attorney) naming someone to make medical decisions for him, if he can’t, as well as a living will (a.k.a. advance directive) spelling out his view on extraordinary measures at the end of life. Yet a survey last year found 64% of baby boomers hadn’t taken the very basic step of signing a living will.”
There are three main purposes for a having a will and each and every person, age 18 or older, needs his or her own will. No exceptions.
1. Appoint Guardians for Minor Children.
2. Appoint a Personal Representative (i.e. Executor)
3. Distribute Assets to selected beneficiaries in the most appropriate manner
One of the biggest misconceptions is, Estate Planning is just for the wealthy. Regardless of the extent of your net worth, estate planning is for everyone. Yes, complex strategies may be used by wealthy people to reduce death taxes and costs. But others may only require a simple will and/or trust to pass on property and provide for minor children.
Even if a simple will is all you require, an estate plan is an essential part of your financial planning. Everybody will need it someday and the time to address or update your estate plan is now.
Contact our Haddonfield office to schedule a consultation with Charles Bratton. 856-857-6007.