Why you must Plan for your Estate

By: Emma M., Assistancefinder
Published Feb 28, 2020 8:14:51 AM

Many people find the idea of estate planning a downer. It means thinking about your mortality and the fact you won’t be here forever, but it’s imperative you start the process of estate planning as soon as possible. It’s not something that can wait unless you want to leave your loved ones with a myriad of legal issues, battles, and probate issues upon your death. Handling your estate now means you’re able to save your loved ones a lot of money and focus on allowing the more time to heal following your death rather than stress over your legal issues.

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Reduce Estate Taxes

Taxes are expensive, and you won’t find your estate taxes are affordable if you don’t do some advanced estate planning. You can do this many ways, and it is important you learn how to make your money go further by learning how you can make it less taxable. If you gift your assets to your loved ones in a small amount over the course of many years, you can make sure that money is not taxable. By gifting these items to your loved ones a little at a time, they become a part of that person’s life. They’re gifts under a certain value, so they aren’t taxable to the recipient. However, they’re also no longer a part of your own portfolio, which means they’re also not going to count against you in terms of taxes.

Legacy Plans

If you’re looking to create a trust, a legacy plan is not a bad place to start. This kind of plan is designed so you can create trusts for people in your family who aren’t even born yet. This is more than just giving your kids, grandkids, and great-grandkids some of your estate. This kind of trust is set up so you restate is protected for centuries to come so your great-great-grandchildren and even their own grandchildren are able to take something from you.

One of the most popular forms of a legacy trust comes in the form of a charitable legacy trust. This is when your money is placed in a specific trust and used to help those you donate to regularly following your death. These can be public charities or even private foundations, and you get to control how your money is used and spent following your death by creating the outline for the trust and the stipulations concerning the use of the trust money. For example, you could leave money that can be allocated as your board of trustees sees fit to any medical facility, but the vote must be 100 percent on all parts or the money isn’t spent. You can make it whatever you want, but this is just a prime example of how many legacies are created.

Asset Protection

Asset protection is important. Even if you don’t have a lot of money to protect, protecting your assets is imperative. Your job is to get your money into the right places so it’s protected if ever a lawsuit is filed against you personally or even against your business. If you create a Spousal Lifetime Access Trust, you can reduce what you owe in terms of taxes as well as keep your money safe from the people who are looking to take it from you in a lawsuit. You can even keep it from being used against you in a domestic issue such as divorce or if creditors come after you for nonpayment.

Your estate is something you should think about even if you’re not planning on exiting this world for decades to come. The unfortunate truth is that anything can happen to anyone anytime. You must e prepared for this, you must have your estate in order, and you must have all your assets accounted for. Doing this with the help of an estate planning attorney is what you do to keep your mind at ease and prevent additional problems from occurring when your estate goes into probate following your death. You want not only to protect your assets but also to keep your life in order in terms of how you spend your money and how it’s taxed upon your death.

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