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An Essential Estate Planning Checklist

Douglas Goldin Dec. 1, 2017

Planning your estate can be an overwhelming process. There are many aspects to ensuring that you have everything in order, and you will want to feel confident that there will be no complications in passing on your wealth over to your heirs. In planning your estate effectively, you should also prepare for any imaginable scenario, including becoming incapacitated during your lifetime due to ill health.

The following is a list of the most important elements that you should include in your estate plan.

Durable power of attorney

A durable power of attorney is a person that you have chosen to make decisions on behalf of you if become incapacitated or unable to make your own decisions during your lifetime.

Designation of beneficiary

If you specifically designate a beneficiary, it will be ensured that assets such as your 401(k) plan will be passed to them. This is because without having a designated beneficiary, some of your assets will be passed to your heirs automatically without going through the will.

Letter of intent

A letter of intent can be used to explain many different wishes, from describing how you would like your funeral to who you would like to be in possession of certain assets.

Designating guardianship

If you have dependent children, you may want to put forward a guardianship designation to say who you would like to take care of your children in the event of your death.

Drafting an estate plan is not an easy task and should be done using careful research and consultation so that you understand the implications of everything that needs to be included.