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What should my estate plan include?

Oct 30, 2020 | Estate Planning

Michigan residents likely understand that they need an estate plan, but what that actually entails might not be clear. While many people think that they need to write a will and they have completed their estate plan, this is not the case.

An estate plan not only covers the distribution of one’s assets in case of a person’s death, but also its management in case someone is unable to manage them him or herself. Here are some important topics that all estate plans should address.

Incapacity

If someone is incapacitated, who will make important healthcare and financial decisions on their behalf? Two documents, healthcare proxy and power of attorney, can be used to identify these people. People might want to make a trust to handle their assets as well. Deciding who to appoint can be difficult, as some might prefer appointing a family member while others may prefer someone who has medical or financial knowledge.

Minor children

Who will take care of the children after your death? Additionally, who will manage their assets for them until they are of age to do so for themselves?

Fiduciaries

Appointing executors and trustees is an integral part of the estate plan and need to be named in trust documents and wills. Naming them is not the last step though, as these names should be updated regularly corresponding to life changes.

Creating an estate plan is important for ensuring one’s assets are distributed as intended after their death. Additionally, it can also be an important tool for ensuring one’s healthcare decisions are being made by the right person and financial affairs are being managed appropriately while one is alive but unable to make these decisions. An experienced attorney can help create a tailor-made plan for those interested in protecting their assets.