Getting Started on Your Estate Plan

Most people are aware they should have some sort of estate plan in place. However, knowing something is true and acting on it are two different things. This is especially true when it comes to complicated and uncomfortable topics like preparing for the end of one’s life. Fortunately, there are a few different strategies people can use to jumpstart the process of planning their estate. To learn more about protecting your assets, providing for loved ones and generally starting the estate planning process, please contact a member of our experienced estate planning legal team today.

Setting a Timeline

When it comes to getting started on their estate plans, many testators find it helpful to set incremental deadlines. For instance, a person should set a date by which he/she should have a conversation with loved ones about guardians and inheritances and then set a later date to meet with an estate planning lawyer. Within the following couple of months, the testator could then plan on clarifying and confirming relevant documents and obtaining signatures.

Setting a timeline that is broken down into manageable steps can make the estate planning process feel less daunting and much more manageable. It can also be helpful to make appointments with attorneys, family members, accountants and planners, but to schedule those meetings a few months down the road to give the parties more time to prepare.

Keeping it Simple

Setting up a basic estate plan is often not as complicated or as costly as many testators fear. In fact, an experienced attorney can shoulder the majority of the burden when it comes to creating an estate plan, leaving testators to come up with a general plan for inheritances, bequests and charitable donations. This is especially true for those who are interested in creating a basic estate plan, as it is always possible for testators to go back and update their wills later. On the other hand, trying to account for all future possibilities at one time can be overwhelming – so if you don’t have an estate plan in place, you may want to consider implementing a basic estate plan for the time being and then updating it at a later date.

Visualizing What Would Happen to Your Estate Without a Will

In some cases, the best way to motivate yourself to start the estate planning process is to imagine the result of dying intestate. For many, passing away without an estate plan in place could mean:

● A court will be responsible for naming a guardian for the deceased’s minor children;
● A person’s estate will be distributed based not on the deceased’s wishes, but according to state law;
● A family business will be dissolved;
● Assets will be distributed to family members without restrictions or protections; and
● The testator’s final wishes regarding end of life decisions will not be respected.
Ultimately, one of the best ways to get the estate planning process rolling is to remember who the estate plan will benefit – your family, friends and loved ones.

Contact Our Glenview Attorneys Today

To speak with a dedicated estate planning lawyer about your own estate plan, please call Orlowsky & Wilson, Ltd. Attorneys at Law at 847-325-5559 today.

Updated as of July 2019
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