Estate Planning as a Key Aspect of Financial Wellness

When the term “financial wellness” is brought up, you might picture creating a debt management strategy, choosing the right investments, and planning for retirement. What you may not consider, though, is that estate planning is another element of a comprehensive plan for financial wellness. 

A few reasons to include estate planning as part of your overall financial plan are as follows:

It Protects Minor Children

No parent wants to think of an event that would leave them unable to care for their children. But without an estate plan, in the event that neither parent can care for their children, the state will decide where they will go.

With an estate plan, you can both appoint a guardian for your children and allocate funds to care for them. Losing their parents is an undoubtedly traumatic event, but by giving your children the gift of a secure financial future, you can help minimize the stress thereafter.

It Minimizes the Financial Burden on Your Heirs

The world of inheritance taxes is a messy one, especially if you don’t understand what you’re getting into. Between estate taxes and inheritance taxes, your loved ones might find that they owe much more in taxes than they bargained for.

An experienced estate planning lawyer will take a look at your finances and help you determine the best way to keep your heirs’ tax burden as low as possible. 

Don’t make the mistake of thinking that speaking with an estate planning lawyer is something you only need if you have a very high net worth, though: Even modest inheritances can involve shockingly high taxes!

It Keeps Family Strife to a Minimum

You want your loved ones to remember you fondly, not as the relative whose estate led to months of acrimony. If you pass on and leave behind an estate plan that isn’t up to date (or worse, you leave behind no estate plan at all), your family members may end up fighting over who gets what.

Estate debates like these can lead to lifelong family divides. And even if your family members handle things as maturely as possible, figuring out how to divide your assets or letting a probate court decide just leads to stress that no one needs.

It Protects Your Family’s Financial Security

If you’re like most people, you’ll want your assets to go toward supporting your loved ones and protecting them from financial instability. However, if your estate plan doesn’t clearly divide your assets, those loved ones might have to wait years before they get the financial support they need. A little careful planning now can make a world of difference when the time comes.

Need help with estate planning?

Estate planning involves far more than just drafting a will and keeping it in a safe. With a comprehensive estate plan, you can save your loved ones from countless hours of grief and help them understand how to distribute your assets in just the way you would have wanted. They’ll be able to avoid the long, stressful ordeal of probate as well.

With all of that being said, unless you’re a lawyer, you likely don’t know how to go about creating a complete estate plan. And because you won’t be around to clear up any confusion or address any discrepancies, a detailed and thorough plan is crucial. 

The estate planning attorneys at OC Wills & Trust Attorneys are here to help. We’ve been serving the Orange County area since 2008, and we’re committed to granting people like you the peace of mind they deserve. If you’re ready to create a new estate plan or update the one you have, reach out to us today for a consultation.