The prospect of sitting down and creating an estate plan can be daunting for many people. In fact, about half of all Americans do not have an estate plan in place, often because they find the entire concept to be intimidating. If you are ready to get started with your estate plan, but you are not sure where to start, the Indianapolis estate planning attorneys at Frank & Kraft suggest that you start by asking yourself some important estate planning questions.
Estate Planning Can Be Overwhelming
Creating a comprehensive estate plan is one of the most meaningful gifts you can give to your loved ones – and to yourself. Nevertheless, the entire estate planning process can be overwhelming. A well thought out plan will have several components in it that work together to achieve numerous interrelated goals. Just deciding what overall objectives to include in your estate plan can be difficult if you are new to the concept. Choosing your objects is just the beginning though. Once you know what you want to achieve, you need to choose the right tools and strategies to help you successfully reach your goals. The complexity of the estate planning process is one of many reasons why you should work closely with an experienced estate planning attorney. There are things you can do, however, to help get yourself prepared to create your estate plan.
Estate Planning Questions to Consider
If you are new to estate planning, you probably do not know what to expect from your initial consultation with an estate planning attorney, much less how to create a comprehensive plan. One of the best ways to remove some of your own anxiety and increase the efficiency and success of your estate plan is to ask yourself some pertinent questions before you get started. While some of these estate planning questions may not pertain to you and your circumstances, others will help you feel prepared and focused when you meet with your attorney:
- Who do I need to protect if something happens to me?
- Who should be in charge of administering my estate?
- What special gifts (such as family heirlooms) do I want to give to people?
- Who should manage the inheritance I leave to my minor child(ren)?
- What assets do I own?
- How valuable are my assets?
- What major debts do I have?
- Who do I want to make medical treatment decisions for me if I cannot make them?
- Who do I want to control my assets if I am incapacitated?
- How do I feel about end-of-life medical treatment, such as life-sustaining or life-prolonging measures?
- Do I have children from a previous relationship that I need to include and protect in my estate plan?
- Do any of my beneficiaries have special needs?
- Do any of my beneficiaries have an addiction or mental health issue that could be problematic if I leave them an inheritance?
- Are there charities, religious organizations, or other entities that I want to include in my estate plan?
- Do I need to plan for the care and maintenance of a pet in my estate plan?
- Will my estate likely incur federal gift and estate taxes?
- Will my estate require formal probate?
- Is someone likely to contest my Will?
- Will my loved ones need immediate access to assets if I die?
- Can I afford to pay for long-term care if my spouse or I need it?
Contact Indianapolis Estate Planning Attorneys
For more information, please join us for an upcoming FREE seminar. If you have additional questions or concerns about the estate planning questions you should ask yourself, contact the experienced Indianapolis estate planning attorneys at Frank & Kraft by calling (317) 684-1100 to schedule an appointment.
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