Planning for the inevitable is not a very pleasant thing to think about. But if you fail to prepare for when your time will be up, your assets may not pass on to your heirs how you want them to. Not only can estate planning maximize the value of your estate, but it gives you the opportunity to make decisions about what will happen to your assets.
If you fail to implement or update your estate plan, your beneficiaries may lose out on what you want them to get. If you want your estate to be as valuable as possible, here are some common estate planning errors to avoid.
1. Not updating your plan
Do not make the mistake of setting up your estate planning documents then neglecting them. It is imperative for you to regularly review and make changes to your estate plan. Make it a point to review your plan annually. You should also edit your estate plan if you experience any significant life changes, such as a remarriage or an heir passing away.
2. Failing to avoid probate
If you only have a will, your estate will go through the probate process, which may be expensive and lengthy for your heirs. Probate is also a very public process. You can help your beneficiaries avoid some of these drawbacks of probate by setting up a revocable trust.
3. Doing it yourself
You may rely on DIY estate planning tools you find online, but this can come back to haunt you and your heirs later. Saving some money upfront will not be worth it if you make mistakes or fail to account for certain assets. Avoid taking a DIY approach to your estate planning. Proper legal counsel will make sure everything is done correctly.
Estate planning may be intimidating to think about, but it is possible to do it right if you avoid making these costly mistakes.