Thinking about a time when you are no longer here with loved ones is enough to make any person overwhelmed with emotion. We are mortal beings and we know that eventually it will be our time to pass on. Many people find estate planning a tricky task, as it entails thinking about how you want your legacy to be distributed to future generations.
Writing an estate plan helps keep your assets out of probate, in addition to giving grieving loved ones a period of peace after your departure. Dealing with legal issues and estate-related matters during a time of grief is stressful, so many family members establish an estate plan so they feel more prepared for the journey to come.
One of the most important tasks you will have to do when writing an estate plan is to choose your beneficiaries and what part of your assets you’d like them to have. This can quickly cause tension among your loved ones, so it can help to communicate with them about what they can expect in the future before you have passed away.
Here are tips for choosing your beneficiaries wisely, but with heart too:
Who is Closest To You?
Think about those you love and who are closest to you. This may be your significant other, best friend, sibling, parents, or other family. There isn’t a wrong answer when it comes to who you want to have a piece of your legacy after passing on. Chances are, those closest to you aren’t thinking about the money or items that will be given to them down the road, but when the time comes they’ll surely take to heart what’s been left behind for them.
Who Do You Trust with Roles?
Along with choosing people who you want to have certain assets, you may need to appoint someone that is close to you but who you also trust to handle some legal matters. So, you will have to pick a person who of course has your best interest in mind, but will be able to at least ask for help from a legal professional if they have questions about handling your affairs later on. For example, who you pick as the executor of your estate will have to tackle tasks such as:
- Filing the will to the court to pay off debts
- Closing accounts
- Communicating with beneficiaries
- Confirming assets are distributed as directed in will
- Hiring appraiser for valuing property
- Filing tax returns with the IRS
- Paying claims by creditors
- And so much more