Discussing your estate plan during the holidays might seem inappropriate or unpleasant. However, it’s often the only time to discuss important matters with the entire family. Some people don’t see their relatives often. The holiday season is a valuable opportunity for everyone to get together and catch up.
You should take this opportunity to sit your family down and talk with them about your estate plan. Who knows when you’ll have another chance? When you plan ahead and let your family know about your plans, your family has the time they need to digest what you tell them and know what to do if the unexpected happens.
Below are five reasons you should include estate planning in your family holiday schedule this year.
Close family members often feel confused and emotional when someone they love dies or becomes incapacitated. Leaving the tough choices about distributing your assets to them will likely lead to poor decision-making, arguments, and tension between relatives.
Creating a complete and detailed estate plan and telling your family about it gives them the information necessary to make informed decisions. They know how to manage your affairs if you can no longer speak for yourself, where to access funds for your medical treatment, and how to handle your funeral.
You might choose specific family members to carry out tasks if you need long-term care in the future. Setting aside time for face-to-face conversations with these individuals can prevent issues later.
You should inform each person of the type of care you want when you can’t make sound decisions due to an injury, illness, or incapacitation. You can also advise them about the responsibilities everyone will have so they know how to handle your care when you get older.
You want to care for your family when you’re gone. Creating an estate plan means your assets remain protected, and loved ones receive what they need to secure their financial future. However, heirs might fight over property, family heirlooms, and other personal items, especially if one believes they deserve more than another.
Take the abundance of family time you have during the holiday season to explain to each person why you’re leaving them specific assets. You can alleviate confusion and prevent ugly courtroom battles in the future after your executor administers your estate.
Your estate planning documents won’t accomplish much if your surviving family members don’t know where they are. Now is a good time to remind beneficiaries and heirs where you store them.
Some people might have physical or electronic copies of certain documents. If you keep them in a storage locker, home safe, or safety deposit box, at least a few trusted individuals should know the access information.
When you die, the only way to ensure the proper transfer of assets is to create an estate plan. Your last will and testament should outline which individuals will inherit which property. You can set up beneficiary designations for life insurance policies, bank accounts, or retirement plans.
Inform each person of what they can expect to receive upon your death. You want your loved ones to feel protected and cared for even when you’re gone. Ensuring your assets end up in the right hands can make for an enjoyable holiday season.
At The Law Offices of Stephanie Hon, our legal team helps clients plan for the unexpected. When you hire us, we will carefully review every aspect of your estate plan to ensure we meet your needs. You can count on us to protect your assets and your family’s future.
Call us at (512) 888-9378 today for a free fifteen-minute phone call with an experienced estate planning lawyer in Cedar Park, TX, if you want to learn more about creating or modifying an estate plan.