The popular website Caring.com has been conducting research on an annual basis to measure the estate planning preparedness of adults in the United States. They have found that the majority of them are completely unprepared. Believe it or not, just 46% of individuals who are 55 years of age and older have wills or trusts in place. When you include adults of all ages, the figure is an anemic 34.1%. Another interesting statistic is the fact that most of the respondents feel that estate … [Read more...] about With Legal Help, Estate Planning Is Easier Than You Think
From companionship and improved mental well-being to increased physical activity, pets can greatly enhance your overall quality of life as an elder. In this blog post, we will delve into the advantages of pet ownership for seniors in detail. We will also discuss the value of a pet trust to address longevity concerns. Companionship and Emotional Support Loneliness and isolation are common challenges faced by seniors, but owning a pet can alleviate these feelings. Pets provide constant … [Read more...] about Pet Ownership for Seniors: A Pet Trust Can Ease Longevity Concerns
As a parent or guardian, you want to ensure that your kids are well taken care of in the event of your absence. Effective strategizing provides the safety net that can make this a reality. Among the estate planning tools at your disposal are UGMA and UTMA accounts, 529 plans, and trusts. Let's unpack how each of these can benefit your child and how they differ. UGMA and UTMA Accounts: Easy and Effective UGMA (Uniform Gifts to Minors Act) and UTMA (Uniform Transfers to Minors Act) accounts are … [Read more...] about Safeguarding Your Child’s Future With Smart Estate Planning Tools
As the year winds down, many of us are caught up in holiday planning and New Year's resolutions. While you're reviewing your goals and plans for the upcoming year, don't overlook an important task: scheduling an estate plan review. Just like you wouldn't neglect an annual health check-up or a regular car service, reviewing your estate plan is a crucial practice for maintaining your financial health and peace of mind. Why an Annual Review Matters Think of your estate plan as a living, … [Read more...] about Schedule an Estate Plan Review with the New Year Approaching
Many people shy away from estate planning, either because it’s uncomfortable to ponder one's mortality or because it seems like a complex task. Whatever the reason, not having an estate plan can create complications that ripple across the generations. Let’s dissect the outcomes you expose yourself to when you procrastinate or completely ignore estate planning. Rolling the Dice: Intestacy Laws Take Over If you don’t leave a will or a trust, your estate automatically falls under state intestacy … [Read more...] about Estate Planning Neglect: Unraveling the Risks
What does estate planning entail? If you ask this question to a random person, they will probably say you draw up a will. This is an obvious option, but a trust can be a better choice in many instances. Let’s look at some of these situations. Timely Asset Distributions Do you want your loved ones to receive their inheritances shortly after your passing, or would you like them to wait for eight or nine months at minimum? If you think this is an absurd question, you should understand the fact … [Read more...] about When Is a Trust Preferable to a Will?
You may think that estate planning is a do-it-yourself project, thanks to the array of online tools and forms available today. However, estate planning is far more complex than just filling in the blanks on a will template. Let's dive into why consulting an estate planning lawyer is not just recommended but essential. They Know the Law Inside and Out Laws governing estate planning are intricate and vary by state. An estate planning lawyer understands these laws and how they apply to your … [Read more...] about Is an Estate Planning Lawyer Really Necessary?
Caring.com conducts annual surveys to get a feel for the percentages of American adults that have estate plans in place. They release the results during the early portion of the year, and they have recently shared their 2023 findings. We will take a look at some of the important takeaways in this post. Overall Preparedness The percentage of adults with estate plans has remained constant for the most part over recent years with slight fluctuations. This time around, 34.1 percent of all people … [Read more...] about 2023 Caring.com Survey Reveals Widespread Estate Planning Unpreparedness
There are websites that sell generic, boilerplate legal documents, including DIY wills. Their marketing material makes it sound like it is easy for anyone to plan their own estate using DIY tools that can be purchased online. Since so many people put estate planning on the back burner, this can sound like a simple solution, but this is actually a shortsighted perspective. In this post, we will look at four reasons why you should probably steer clear of do-it-yourself estate planning … [Read more...] about Four Reasons to Steer Clear of DIY Wills
There is no universal, one-size-fits-all plan. At the same time, some of the documents in a complete estate plan are necessary for everyone. In this post, we will provide clarity that will help you cover all of your bases appropriately. Asset Transfers All estate plans will arrange for postmortem asset transfers. However, there are different documents that can be used to facilitate the distributions. A will is one option, but a trust of some kind will be a better choice for a wide range of … [Read more...] about What Documents Are in a Complete Estate Plan?