Many people wonder how planning for death is a productive thing to do. However, the people that actually do it and factor in decisions such as what will happen to their assets, who will close out important financial accounts for them, what will happen to their home and how any dependents will be cared for, can compile their thoughts in an estate plan. When properly coordinated, a legally signed estate plan in Louisiana is an excellent way for people to protect their surviving loved ones and to have peace of mind.
There are many factors that may not appear complicated until a person dies and their surviving family members are left to figure things out on their own. Even big-name celebrities have made the mistake of failing to plan for their future and when they pass away, the fate of things that were important to them is left in the hands of the state to decide. If people lack to plan ahead, their family members may disagree vehemently on whether or not their deceased family member should be cremated or buried among a host of other things.
If changes within family relationships stemming from divorce, remarriage or adoption are not addressed in an estate plan, surviving family members may feel shocked and hurt about who is awarded what. Likewise, if people do not update their estate plan to reflect major changes within their family, despite the fact that their mind has changed, legal papers will reflect their initial decision. For example, one man forgot to remove his ex-wife as the sole beneficiary on his estate plan so when he passed away, his current wife got nothing and his ex got everything. When people effectively plan ahead, they can eliminate contentious family drama and better protect the people who are important to them.
Before they begin writing an estate plan, people may wish to collaborate with an attorney. Working with a legal professional can help people ensure they do not make any critical mistakes along the way.
Source: The Washington Post, “You will die. Don’t exit leaving a hot mess behind.,” Michelle Singletary, Oct. 5, 2019