Estate Plans Benefit Young Families

Two serious misconceptions regarding estate planning are that it is only for the old and it is only for the rich. In fact, people of any age and level of wealth can benefit from planning their estates, and those in Connecticut who have young families can gain a sense of security and peace of mind when they take the time to make these important plans.

As difficult as some of the factors of estate planning can be to consider, especially when they involve the welfare of your children, the solid and realistic plan you create for the future of your family and your assets can be a foundation that you can adjust and build on as you experience the normal changes in life.

Estate planning step-by-step

While it’s true that the initial stages of estate planning can be time-consuming, you may be surprised at the benefits of collecting vital information and evaluating your current and future needs. The first step is to take an account of your assets and their values, including your home, vehicles, financial accounts, investments, and retirement plans. If you own a business, you will want to include this, too. When your list is complete, you can consider how you will designate your assets in your will or trust.

Next may come the difficult part. You will have to imagine the future needs of your family if you were suddenly not there to care for them. Some critical questions to ask yourself include these:

  • Do you have enough life insurance to cover the needs of your spouse, your children, your parents, and anyone else who depends on you?
  • What are your wishes and goals for your children, and how much will you need to provide to allow them to meet those goals?
  • What are your desires for your medical care if you should become incapacitated?
  • Whom do you trust to manage your finances if you are unable to do so?
  • Who will care for your children if you and their other parent are no longer around or able to?

This last question takes honest and objective thought. The most appropriate guardian for your children is not always their aunt or uncle. Instead, it may be someone outside the family whose philosophies are closer to your own. If you have not established this choice in your estate plan, you can’t depend on a judge to make that decision as you would.

Because there are many options available for many different circumstances, the assistance of an estate-planning attorney can be invaluable. Such a professional will also be able to guide you in understanding and complying with the estate planning laws of Connecticut.