Most people do not want to think about death, dying or distribution of their estate after they pass away. But planning one’s estate is a very important tool for not only oneself but their family as well. Most people do not set up any form of estate planning because they don’t know how to get started or they don’t understand what an estate plan is used for. Here are some tips on choosing the right estate planning advisors.
No two people have the same assets therefore no two estate plans should be the same. The first thing to do is make a list of all assets. Include bank accounts, savings accounts, money market accounts, 401ks, IRA’s, real estate values and don’t forget valuable personal items. After the estate value is figured out, one can begin figuring out who they need to contact to help in setting up an estate plan.
Most people who have large estates usually already have a financial advisor or financial planner that they have built a relationship with. They already know that financial goals of their clients and usually have helped them plan for the future. Ask the financial planner or advisor if they can help with setting up an estate plan, if they say no or that one is not needed, contact a different financial advisor. Most financial advisors have relationships and contacts with attorneys who specialize in estate planning.
An attorney who works primarily in estate planning would be the most beneficial to talk to regarding setting up an estate plan. They can work with the person to tailor their estate plan to fit their needs. There are many different types of estate plans. The most common estate plan includes a will, power of attorney for assets, health care directives, which include a power of attorney for health care and a living will.
For more complex estate plans an attorney may suggest a living trust, irrevocable trust or a charitable trust just to name a few. Attorneys who have the expertise in estate planning are different then going to just the local attorney or going to an attorney that advertises wills and probate.
To find out more information about estate planning services in your area, look in the local phone book or do a search on line for estate planning services. One website that will help with finding an attorney for estate planning services is www.naela.com.