It can be hard for people to understand exactly why having an estate plan is important regardless of your age, financial circumstances, or personal desires. After all, if you are young, do not have a lot of money, do not have children, and do not have anything to worry about, is an estate plan absolutely necessary? What is so important about estate planning that you need to do it right away?
To help explain why having an estate plan is important, today we’re going to take a look at the primary questions your plan answers. We can lump these questions into two groups: the “whens,” and the “ifs.”
The “Whens” of Why Estate Planning is Important
Everyone will die. While this is an uncomfortable statement to make, think about, and talk about, it is a fact of life. Your existence will one day come to an end, and when that happens, certain events will take place. Your family will mourn your loss, your property will pass to new owners, and everything you left behind will have to be properly taken care of.
The estate planning process allows you to address these “when” questions. What happens, for example, to your property when you die without leaving behind a last will and testament? What happens to your children when you die and you have not named a replacement guardian? Who will manage your affairs when you die and make sure that your wishes are respected?
A properly drafted estate plan will allow you to address each of these vital questions, and more.
The “Ifs” of Why Estate Planning is Important
Estate planning is not only about looking ahead towards the inevitable, it is also about making preparations for the contingencies that might affect you and your family. These “ifs” can have serious ramifications on you and your loved ones if you are not properly prepared.
For example, what happens to you should you become involved in a car wreck, or suffer serious injuries as a result of an accident or unexpected illness? Who will look after your property if this happens? Who will take care of your children? Who will ensure that your doctors and health care providers provide you only with the kind of care and treatment you desire?
Each of these types of situations is a possibility, and ach might be more or less likely to happen to you depending on your particular circumstances. Knowing what your options are in planning ahead for these possibilities, and taking the time to answer the important questions about what you want to happen should they occur, is a very big part of what goes on when creating an estate plan.