If the Covid-19 pandemic and the current inflation crisis have shown us anything, it’s to be prepared for anything. These unexpected events have turned all financial rules of thumbs upside down. Throughout these events, you need to continue to protect and preserve your assets the best that you can. Proper and thorough estate planning is the best way to protect your wealth. Continue reading for the best ways to protect your estate.
Write A Will
The simplest way to start estate planning is by drawing up a will. A will is a legal document that describes your wishes for the distribution of your financial and personal assets after your death. Through a will, you can make your wishes be heard of who you want to receive your assets. You can also include who you do not want to receive any of your assets after you pass away.
By writing out a will prior to your passing, you can reduce the stress on your family so you will know how to handle your financial affairs. You can enlist the help of an attorney and a financial advisor to help you build out your will so you include all of your assets and your will is legally sound.
Create A Trust
Trusts are the next step to take after a will. If you have a substantial amount of assets, a trust is necessary to properly protect your assets. A trust will also allow you to have living benefits to protect your assets while you’re still alive.
Trusts are stronger than just a will since you can specifically choose how your assets will be divided after you pass away and are more difficult to be contested. Trusts also prevent your assets from going through probate court, making your passing a bit easier on your loved ones. Even if you think you don’t have enough assets to warrant a trust now, you should also consider the life insurance assets that may come into play after your passing.
Prepare A Power Of Attorney
A power of attorney is the legal documentation stating an individual who can make decisions on your behalf in the event you are incapacitated and unable to make decisions for yourself. This is important so you have someone to make financial decisions. You can designate a person that you trust has your best interests in mind.
Designate Beneficiaries On Your Retirement Accounts
While you can include the beneficiaries of your retirement accounts in your will, designating your beneficiaries within your retirement accounts is stronger. This can also prevent your family from any stress after you pass away. If you do not list your beneficiaries, the accounts will have to go through probate. Luckily, it only takes a few minutes to update your accounts with beneficiary information.
Protecting your estate is one of the best ways to help ease your family’s stress after you pass away and to make sure your wishes are carried out. A financial advisor is a great person to have on your side in the estate planning process so you have all of your affairs in order. Our advisors at Lifebridge Financial Group are more than happy to assist in your estate planning process. Schedule a consultation with us today.