What does an estate plan contain?
July 31, 2019
As you being to think about estate planning, one thing that may come up is what exactly is an estate plan. What does it include? Are there specific documents that must be a part of it, or is it up to you what goes into your estate plan? These are all great questions to have when you start working on your end of life plans in Michigan. You want to go into this process with as much information as possible.
Northwestern Mutual explains that your estate plan should include legal documents that set out your plans for what happens after you die. You may or may not need some of the common documents people include. You need to tailor it to your needs and your finances. There is no need to include excessive documents if that is not what you need.
Perhaps the most common document included is a will. A will allows you to legally explain your last wishes. If you have children, you can name a guardian for them in your will. You can plan for pets and distribute assets in your will. If you have other wishes, such as charitable giving, you can outline that in this document, too. If you have a very simple estate, a will may be all that you need in your estate plan.
Another important document that you should consider is a living will. This is beneficial if you should become ill or injured and it leaves you unable to communicate your wishes. This type of will allows you to state your wishes in regards to medical care.
You may also want to include a power of attorney. This document gives someone you trust the ability to act on your behalf. You can craft it to whatever powers you want. For example, you could make it so the person has the legal right to handle your finances.
Finally, you want to include beneficiary forms. These are for accounts that will automatically transfer on your death, such as an insurance policy and retirement accounts. This information is for education and is not legal advice.