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Planning for Special Circumstances

Three Dangerous Consequences of Putting Off Estate Planning

by Rania Combs

Any attorney can tell you it’s best to create your will while you’re healthy and in full command of all your resources. Unfortunately, though, some people just let time slip by. You need to know that putting off your estate planning can have disastrous consequences, and your loved ones could pay the price.

  1. A judge may decide who raises your minor children.You can use your will to designate a guardian for your minor children. However, if you don’t have a will, a judge who doesn’t know you will make the decision in your place.
  2. A judge may choose who controls your kids’ assets.If you haven’t named someone to manage your estate and control your children’s assets, you’ll put that decision into a judge’s hands. The judge will do his or her best to make an informed choice, but as a parent, you know best. Creating a plan ahead of time helps ensure everything goes according to your wishes.
  3. Your estate may not be managed the way you’d like.Creating your will while you’re healthy allows you to set up trusts for your children and other loved ones. It also gives you control over which family members and friends receive your assets, including your home, your property and your money. If you die without proper estate planning documents, your property could be divided according to a statutory formula, which may not reflect your wishes.

For more information on how early estate planning can benefit you, read: What Would You Do If You Had 46 Days to Live?


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