When people hear the word “Estate Planning” they often associate it with married couples. They believe that this plan is solely for couples because of the need to care for their kids and spouse after death. On the other hand these same set of people believe that the singles don’t need to plan their estate. Of course, they aren’t married, they have no kids, and their estate might be of less value, so why should they plan an estate? Who do they intend to transfer their assets to when they die? They have no children or spouse remember? Well, if you at one point shared that though with such people, your mindset is about to change.
Do singles need to plan their estate?
Of course. We all need to plan our estate regardless of our status. As soon as you reach the age of 18, you are eligible to plan your estate. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. We are aware that one of the main reasons married couples plan their estate is to cater for their children and spouse. The singles on the other hand have different goals when it comes to estate planning. They have no spouse or children to cater for but they have themselves.
Singles plan their estate to protect themselves and make necessary plans to choose the appropriate power of attorney for themselves. It is the duty of this power of attorney to make crucial medical, or financial decisions on their behalf in the event of their incapacitation. Aside from making plans to cater for themselves in the event of their incapacitation, singles also spend a huge amount of time thinking about who to choose as the beneficiaries of their assets since they have no children or spouse.
What should singles do when planning their estate?
What differentiate estate planning for singles and estate planning for married couples is goals. The singles and married couples have different goals when it comes to estate planning, but the process is a little bit different. As a single individual, there are some crucial things you need to put in place if you want that estate plan of yours to be a success.
Choose a power of attorney
A power of attorney is actually a document and not an individual per se. This document authorizes an individual (agent) to act on behalf or in the best interest of another person who can be regarded as the principal. The agent can either have limited or unlimited authority to make decisions on behalf of the principal. The agent is to make financial, medical, legal, and other important decisions on behalf of the principal who is usually a disabled, ill, or incapacitated fellow.
For singles who wish to plan their estate, a power of attorney is one important estate planning component. It gives them the opportunity to designate someone who will act on their behalf in the event of their incapacitation, or illness. Without a POA, the court will appoint someone who will make those decisions on your behalf.
Select their beneficiaries
For the married folks, their spouse and children are natural beneficiaries. For singles, their siblings, parents or close friends can be selected as beneficiaries. To ensure that your wishes is met after your death, you will need to create a will. Without a will, your estate will be shared and managed according to the state law. This simply means that your assets could go to anyone, probably someone who doesn’t deserve to inherit your asset.
So ensure you sit down and make up your mind on who you wish to inherit your assets upon your death. Contact an estate planning attorney if needed.
Who do you need to plan your estate?
Preparing an estate plan is one thing and preparing a “good” estate plan is another. The latter should be the primary aim of any estate owner. You may ask yourself, how do you prepare such an estate plan? It’s simple. Contact us and we will provide you with the best estate planning attorney for your estate.