Thinking about the future can be inspiring but it can also be a difficult task. Just as its name implies, successful estate planning requires foresight and diligence. While this is true for the initial creation of an estate plan, it holds true as time passes and life changes occur. This is why Californians need to be thoughtful about how and when to modify their estate plans. This is really the only way to achieve desired outcomes. This week, this blog will look at some common estate planning mistakes. Those who find themselves susceptible to any number of them should consider reaching out to an estate planning attorney to figure out how best to remedy the situation.
There are a number of estate planning mistakes that can be made. The first, of course, is failing to create a holistic estate plan or any type of estate plan at all. Individuals need to make sure they are addressing not only their assets in their estate plan but also their long-term care and matters pertaining to important health care and financial decisions. Another common mistake is failing to change an estate plan after important life events like the birth of a child or grandchild, divorce and death of named beneficiaries and heirs.
There are other mistakes that are made, though. Far too many people fail to adequately prepare for the costs associated with long-term care and disability, a sad reality that befalls many of us. Additionally, many individuals fail to co-own property with their spouse, which could open it up to creditors upon the owner’s passing. Also, s individuals often don’t realize that they can utilize a will to name a guardian for their minor children. Other estate planning documents can specify how other assets are to be used by a named guardian to support those children.
These are a just a handful of the numerous mistakes that are made during the estate planning process. Any one of these mistakes can be enough to derail one’s goals, which is why they need to make sure they are doing everything they can to ensure all mistakes are avoided. One of the best ways to try to do this is to discuss one’s estate planning goals with an experienced estate planning, including when important life events occur.