Making an estate plan is something that every adult resident of the state of Florida needs to do. Unfortunately, too many people get overwhelmed by the legal details of the estate planning process and fail to keep the bigger picture in mind. As you go about the process of creating a plan for yourself, let your lawyer worry about the legal technicalities. To help you stay motivated and on track, you will want to focus on the practical realities that estate planning addresses. To help you do this, we’ve come up with a list of tips.
Tip 1. You already have an estate plan even if you haven’t made one.
Everybody in the state of Florida will leave behind an estate, and that estate will have to be disposed of. If you choose not to create an estate plan you essentially give your ability to make estate planning decisions to other people.
Regardless of what you might have wanted to happen, failing to make an estate plan means that other people get to make very important decisions about your life and your estate. For example, if you fail to make an inheritance plan, you leave it up to the laws of the state of Florida to determine who will inherit your property after you die.
Tip 2. You don’t have to create your estate plan alone.
When you go to an attorney to create an estate plan, you and your lawyer have a legally protected relationship. Your lawyer is legally obligated to keep the statements you make confidential.
However, you are not obligated to only speak to your lawyer about your estate plan. Many of the issues that you will address in the planning process are very personal in nature. If you want to discuss these issues with your family, religious advisors, professional advisors, or anyone else, you are entirely free to do so. In fact, taking the time to discuss important issues with those closest to you is a great way to feel more comfortable with the decisions you end up making.
Tip 3. Your estate plan will be a part of your life, and might have to change.
It’s important to realize that your estate plan is something that will be with you for the rest of your life. As your life changes, as the laws change, and as your circumstances change, you will need to be prepared to make appropriate changes to your estate plan.
You cannot simply create an estate plan now and forget about it later if you want to get the most out of the process. A good estate plan is one you regularly review and update when necessary.