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Will Wishes: 3 Things Your Estate Plan Might Not Have Covered

Creating a will is a necessary step that many people should take to prepare for the end of life. Without a will that states exactly what your wishes are for your dependents, belongings and more, the government will have to review the situation and decide how to proceed. This can be a lengthy process that results in stress and potential financial loss for your loved ones. To ensure that your final wishes are honored, spend time creating a will that focuses on these important points.

Guardianship of Your Dependents

If you have dependents, their care must be specified in your will. Discuss guardianship beforehand with the friend or family member who you would like to care for them. The last thing that you want is to surprise someone with this request after your passing. In addition to thinking about who will be legally responsible for them, also consider your dependents’ financial well-being. For example, a trust may be established for your dependents, and the new guardian may be responsible for managing the trust until your children are of age. Life insurance proceeds can also be used for this purpose, and the guardian should be named as a beneficiary on your policy.

Real Estate and Other Physical Assets

When you think about a will, you may understandably think about who will receive your house after you pass away. However, you may also have other assets that need to be dispersed among survivors. This may include bank accounts balances, precious metals, artwork, boats, antique furnishings and more. When you do not specify who these items are passed to after your death, your will’s executor usually makes these decisions for you. That is why doing your estate planning beforehand is important.

A Power of Attorney

Another thoughtful inclusion for your will is to name an enduring power of attorney. This feature gives a specific individual the absolute right to act on your legal authority. In the event that you overlooked an important matter when creating your will, your enduring power of attorney will ensure that a trusted individual who has been carefully selected by you makes the right decisions on your behalf.

Creating a will can be complicated, and you understandably want to cover all of the bases so that you do not overlook any important elements. A smart idea is to hire a lawyer who is familiar with end-of-life planning to assist you with the development of a will. Remember to update your will periodically as your life situation and assets change.

Tim Esterdahl

Tim Esterdahl is the editor of IFCS blog. He is a married father of three and enjoys golf in his spare time.

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