Too many people put off developing their estate plan until they're in their senior years. However, many of the people who put some type of estate plan in place in their younger years -- even a simple will -- do so because of an impending life event.
This is the year that you finally sit down with an attorney and develop your estate plan. You've worked hard your entire adult life and have a fair amount to show for it. Should you leave your assets to your children and grandchildren when you die or to charitable organizations whose work you support?
As our population ages, more and more people are dealing with parents who are suffering from Alzheimer's disease and other conditions that can cause dementia. Sometimes, signs of dementia don't show up until a person is elderly. Increasingly, however, people are diagnosed in the early stages, before their memory and cognitive functions become noticeably impaired.
Many people don't think of a life insurance policy as part of an estate plan, but it is. Even if you are leaving considerable assets to your family and other loved ones, many of those assets won't be available immediately after you die.
Many people think that only wealthy Arizonans need an "estate plan." It sounds very grand. However, if you own property and have some accounts, you have an estate, and it may be bigger than you realize.
Many people develop estate plans that are designed to ensure that the family's assets remain in the family. Divorce can take a big chunk out of a family's wealth when a spouse gets a share of an adult child's money. That's why some parents choose to leave money to their children using trust funds.
When doing their estate planning, people often focus on how their bank, investment and retirement accounts, as well as other liquid assets, will be split up among their heirs. They likely think of what will happen to their home as well.
If you got in on the cryptocurrency phenomenon early, you may have a nice chunk of change saved up. Of course, because of the nature of these "cryptoassets" or digital assets, if you're the only one who knows how to access them, they'll essentially die with you.
If you own a timeshare, you may be considering leaving it to one or more of your children. Whether it's been the destination for family vacations over the years or it's something you and your spouse bought when you retired, you may want your kids to continue to enjoy it after you're gone. However, that particular inheritance may end up being more trouble and expense than you (or they) ever imagined.
A loved one is drafting their estate plan and has asked you to be the executor of their estate. You're likely flattered by the request and they're trusting you with a big responsibility. Many people automatically agree to do it, in part because they don't want to give any real thought to their loved one passing away. However, that day will come, sooner or later. You owe it to that person to give some serious thought to the request before giving your commitment -- or declining.