Estate Planning: Planning for the Future
When planning your financial future, it is important to consider an investment strategy, risk tolerance and time horizon. These are critical aspects of building wealth.
Although many of us focus on the now, we forget about organizing our finances and personal interests upon our passing. This aspect of planning is neglected many times and can put everything at risk. As investors, we will spend many years saving and planning; we should take the steps to protect all that we have built. This can be done by arranging an estate plan that will allow you to pass on your assets to who you want, how you want, and when you want.
This type of planning may seem overwhelming, but an effective estate plan doesn’t need to be complicated. It can be broken down in two key elements. The first is having a durable power of attorney and the second is a will.
Having a durable power of attorney will allow you to manage your assets while you are still living by appointing someone to act in the event you are unable to do so. A will focuses on managing and distributing your assets after death.
In addition to these key elements, an estate plan can help avoid the problems and expenses of probate, avoid family conflicts, provide flexibility in estate management, and minimize taxes at the time of death. These are some of the benefits and why estate planning is so important. However, how does one get started on setting up an estate plan?
Most estate planning objectives can be accomplished by hiring an attorney or by using an online “do-it-yourself” approach. The cost of hiring an estate planning attorney to assist with the development and implementation of an estate plan is typically far outweighed by the benefits of recruiting experienced council. The person who decides to save money by using an online service is likely to make costly mistakes, says estate attorney Kari Meyrose of Gorman and Jones Law Firm.
“Estate planning attorneys spend many years learning the contours of estate planning rules and methodologies, and they have the ability to forecast the potential outcomes that may result from an individual estate plan,” Meyrose says.
Estate plans range from simple to very complicated, and in some cases the cost of not using an attorney may actually end up being a very costly lesson for loved ones. Either way you decide— do it yourself or use an attorney — don’t procrastinate in making a choice and take action in planning your future.
For more information about estate planning or Jacob Gold & Associates Inc., visit www.jacobgold.com.
This information was prepared by Michael Cochell of Jacob Gold & Associates Inc. and is for educational information only. The opinions/views expressed within are that of Michael Cochell of Jacob Gold & Associates Inc. and do not necessarily reflect those of ING Financial Partners or its representatives. In addition, they are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. Neither ING Financial Partners nor its representatives provide tax or legal advice. You should consult with your financial professional, attorney, accountant or tax advisor regarding your individual situation prior to making any investment decisions.[/stextbox]