Everyone needs an estate plan, and few people have one. Most Americans do not have an estate plan or fail to update old estate planning documents they might have prepared earlier. A good estate plan created by an experienced attorney can help you feel more confident about the future.
Here are some reasons people delay estate planning:
They don’t see a need:
In addition to anticipating good health, many people do not see the need to do estate planning because they do not consider their assets to be valuable enough for an estate plan. Many people assume that estate planning is only for the rich. However, “estate” means whatever you own, it does not require a certain amount of wealth.
Estate planning actually saves your family money because they are not left with paying a percentage probate fee based on the value of your assets. For example, if you own a home worth $100,000 in California (although we know the likelihood of a home in California being this inexpensive is nearly impossible), you would pay at least $4,000 in probate fees, and another $4,000 to the probate attorney handling the probate case.
Having an effective estate plan prepared by an attorney can actually save you money! Without an estate plan, your family can be forced to go through a legal process known as “probate”, which can be costly and time-consuming and lead to conflict among family members and loved ones. Putting an estate plan in place will save them time, stress, and money and make their lives much easier in the event of your passing. It will let them know exactly what belongs to who and hopefully decrease the amount of guessing that your loved ones are left with.
Cost And Uncertainty
Sometimes people assume that the legal fees for estate planning are high, and clients often don’t know in advance what the lawyer’s fees will be.
Our estate planning fees are reasonably priced and a flat rate to avoid a high cost to our clients, they also include all of the ancillary documents that are needed alongside a revocable trust, such as a pour over will, power of attorney forms, HIPAA authorizations, and advance health care directives.
The bottom line is that the cost of not doing an estate plan can be substantially higher than the cost of hiring an experienced estate planning attorney.
Difficulty Making Decisions
The estate planning process will involve many important decisions. You will need to choose who to name to important roles and how your assets will be divided. You might have to decide who to name as the guardian of your children or who will be making important decisions for you if you can no longer make them for yourself. For some people, this will be easy, and for others, this may be difficult.
For those with tough decisions to make, both the estate planning process and receiving legal help from experienced estate planning attorneys can be helpful. Most of the time, seeing names on estate planning draft documents allows clients to feel whether or not the choice is right. Based on our experience with hundreds of estate planning clients, we can walk you through the difficult decisions. In most cases, if you change your mind, you can change your estate plan.
Estate Planning Checklists Will Help You Plan For The Future
Taking the time to create an estate plan can make your family members’ lives easier in the event of your incapacity.