It doesn't matter if you are going through the estate planning process for the first time or have been down this path before, nothing changes the fact that you need to avoid any and every mistake.
While this sounds simple enough, it can be a challenge to get on the right path. You never know when something will pop up that gets in your way, thus causing trouble for you and/or your family.
There are many steps you can take to avoid the same old estate planning mistakes, starting with collecting as much knowledge as possible. Here are some of the many mistakes that have plagued people before you:
- Forgetting to create an estate plan. This isn't something you can afford to do, as you need an estate plan in place at all times. Don't neglect to take action, as this is a big risk that could cost you.
- Neglecting to update your estate plan when necessary. Things will change in your life that call for adjustments to your estate plan. For example, this may happen if you tie the knot or go through the divorce process.
- Overlooking the fact that you could face a disability in the future. There is more to estate planning than thinking about what will happen when you pass on. You also need to plan for a disability. This could mean something as simple as creating a power of attorney.
- Forgetting to name a guardian for any children under the age of 18. Who will care for your children if you and your spouse pass on before they reach legal age? If you don't name a guardian, you can't answer this question with confidence.
- Putting it off. You may think you have time to create an estate plan, but you don't want to procrastinate any longer. You need to take action at some point, and there is no better time than now. This will give you the peace of mind you've been seeking.
It's not always easy to create an estate plan, but it's a task you need to tackle at some point. If you make one or more of these mistakes, it could cause harm to you or your family now or in the future.
When you combine this knowledge with a sound understanding of the laws in your state, there's nothing stopping you from creating the perfect estate plan.