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Estate Planning in Four Simple Steps

Date : Apr 03,2014
By : Anica Oaks

No one really enjoys discussing estate planning. Despite the natural adversity to the topic, it is important to consider the process before the need becomes imminent. It will reduce the amount of stress that a person might experience and prepares for the unthinkable. Estate planning is not difficult, only unpleasant. It can be completed in four simple steps.

1. Get the Master Information Document Ready

This document is all of the information that the executor of the estate would need to be able to close any accounts and obtain all of the necessary account balances. Without this information, being able to satisfactorily complete the estate process will be next to impossible and put undue stress on the executor. To get this document ready, a person simply needs to get all of the information together, including account information, any benefits that people might receive because of the death, all debts and assets, business assets and a copy of the will. This master information document should then be stored in a safe place and the appropriate people should be informed of its existence.

2. Buy Life Insurance

If a person has any dependents, then it is highly recommended to purchase a life insurance policy to prevent them from experiencing financial difficulties and allowing all of the bills to be paid. The only type of life insurance plan that is needed is one that will continue until all dependents are old enough to provide for themselves.

3. Write a Will

Writing a will can be the most difficult of this process, but with the help of estate planning professionals, such as those at the Law Offices of Savin & Bursk, the process can go very smoothly. Determine which possessions and assets will go to which loved ones, if the estate should be liquidated, and if anything should be donated to charity. If a will is not created, then all of a person’s remaining assets will be left to the mercy of the courts.

4. Make Guardianship Plans for Dependents

This is essentially when a person is designated to be the caretaker of any dependents should their current caretaker pass away. Although difficult to discuss, having this determined will provide immense peace of mind.

Estate planning is a critical process that will ensure that the financial situation after a person’s death does not overwhelm any dependents or become a ridiculous legal tangle for the executor. Performing this process will lift the stress of uncertainty from both the person executing the action and those who depend on him or her.
About the author: A recent college graduate from University of San Francisco, Anica loves dogs, the ocean, and anything outdoor-related. She was raised in a big family, so she’s used to putting things to a vote. Also, cartwheels are her specialty. You can connect with Anica here.