Significant life events can motivate individuals to start their estate planning. Oftentimes, it is when people have children that they start taking the steps to get a will, health care directive and power of attorney. However, having a will is just as important for individuals who do not have children, but it can easily be overlooked.
People with children create a will in order to ensure that their children are cared for but, in absence of a will, their children are the obvious heirs. For individuals who do not have children, a will can be just as important – particularly as intended heirs may not be as obvious. Without a will or trust being established, assets are distributed according to Minnesota intestacy statutes. These statutes may not pass inheritances the way in which the deceased individual would have intended. Generally speaking, property and assets either go to the government, charity or individuals. Whether you choose to leave money to a charity, establish a trust for a beloved pet, or set asides funds for specified loved ones, creating a will is how you ensure that your hard-earned money isn’t taken by the government after you have passed away.
Of course, estate planning does not just mean writing a will. Proper estate planning includes a wide range of avenues including creating a health care directive and planning for long term care. A health care directive specifies an agent to make health care decisions on your behalf in the event of any emergency, and also allows them access to your medical files. Long term care planning is necessary for every aging individual, but perhaps even more so for individuals without children. In older age or time of sickness and/or disabilities, individuals with children may be able to rely on their children to assist with their care in many ways that could allow them to avoid long term care for an amount of time or even indefinitely. Without this option, individuals without children should make certain to plan and prepare for “worst case” scenarios, should they occur.
Schromen Law, LLC works with clients to ensure their estate planning meets all of their unique needs and concerns to ensure they have the clarity and protection they need.
The material contained herein is for informational purposes only, and is not intended to create or constitute an attorney-client relationship between Schromen Law, LLC and the reader. The information contained herein is not offered as legal advice and should not be construed as legal advice.
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