There is a common misconception out there that only wealthy people need an estate plan. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Whether you make $10,000 a year or $1,000,000 a year, you absolutely must have an estate plan. In fact, if you have any assets at all, you need an estate plan to ensure that they end up in the correct hands after your passing. In other words, estate planning is for everyone. Below are just a few of the reasons that you should meet with an estate planning attorney as soon as possible to begin the California estate planning process.
Reasons to Estate Plan
1. To provide for your loved ones
If you don’t have an estate plan in place, your assets will be distributed according to California law. In other words, without an estate plan, the state of California—not you—will decide how your property is distributed. If you would like to direct how your assets will be distributed after you pass, you need an estate plan.
2. To name a guardian for your children
If you have minor children, you can use an estate plan to appoint a guardian to care for them. In addition, you can designate an individual to manage assets that you leave for them until they reach adulthood. However, without an estate plan, the probate court will choose a guardian for your children and their assets. And although the court usually chooses a family member, there is no guarantee that it will make the right choice. In order to take the guesswork out of this process, you should be proactive and begin the estate planning process today.
3. To avoid probate
The avoidance of probate is one of the biggest benefits of estate planning. Probate is a slow process, and it can prevent your loved ones from receiving their assets in a timely fashion. In addition, while estate planning is private, probate is a public process. By drafting an estate plan with a California estate planning attorney, you can ensure that your private information remains private.
4. To plan for incapacity
Through the estate planning process, you can determine who will make medical and financial decisions on your behalf should you ever become incapacitated. Without an estate plan, however, these decisions will be left up to your loved ones, and this can be a heavy burden on them.
Get started with the estate planning process today
Everyone needs an estate plan, and the attorneys at OC Wills and Trust Attorneys are here to help you with yours. At OC Wills and Trust Attorneys, our skilled and experienced lawyers will guide you through the estate planning process, leaving you with an estate plan that will protect your assets and save you and your family money. If you’d like to begin the estate planning process, please contact us today for a consultation.