Your estate plan is one of the most important legal documents you will sign. Unfortunately, many people attempt to cut corners or save money by preparing their own estate documents or using an online service.
The problem with these approaches is that they can lead to serious mistakes that cost you and your loved ones money and frustration in the long run. Here are just a few estate planning mistakes that can result in a financial burden for you and your family.
Making an Inadequate Plan
Many people assume the only estate document they need is a last will and testament. Although a will is a wonderful place to start your estate plan, chances are you need much more to fully protect your future and your legacy. Your comprehensive estate plan may include solutions for long-term care, incapacity, health care decisions, retirement planning, Medicaid planning, and possibly more. Creating all of these documents together ensures you do not fail to address any important areas.
Trying to Do-it-yourself
Do-it-yourself is very popular these days. The internet and television are filled with websites and programs that purport to teach anyone how to build a deck, refinish a table, or change the oil in a car. Although DIY is great for some things, it is not ideal for all areas of life. Just as you probably wouldn’t attempt to perform your own heart surgery after reading about it online, you should not attempt to tackle something as complex as a comprehensive estate plan on your own.
Setting Unrealistic Goals or Expectations
Estate planning requires you to make many critical decisions. In many cases, these decisions may also be challenging. This is not a time to be diplomatic or stubborn about what is best for you and your family. For example, is it really the best decision to make all four of your children co-executors? Should you leave your house to your eight grandchildren in eight equal shares? These are questions that require the advice and knowledge of an experienced estate planning attorney.
Never Updating Your Estate Plan
An estate plan is not a “set it and forget it” item. Once your estate plan is in place, it is important to review it often and update it as necessary. Major life changes such as death, divorce, the birth of a child, and retirement should prompt you to conduct a thorough review of your estate documents.
Minnesota Estate Planning and Probate Law Firm
At Jeffrey P. Scott & Associates, LLC, we help our clients create estate planning documents for every stage of life. We will answer your questions and help you explore your options.
Call the Minnesota probate and estate planning attorneys at Jeffrey P. Scott & Associates, LLC today our office to learn more and to discuss your case.
This website has been prepared by Jeffrey P. Scott & Associates, LLC for informational purposes only and does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice from an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction.