When we're younger, we can’t wait to get older; but when we're older, we wish we were young again. For many, this sentiment stems from the fact that as we age, our health typically begins to fail, causing a plethora of problems many would rather avoid. But for some, getting older means tackling really important issues, such as drafting an estate plan, which some realize they should have done earlier in life rather than later.
As some of our more frequent readers know, estate plans are incredibly important documents everyone should have. From establishing intended beneficiaries to health care proxies, an estate plan can do a lot of good if done right. If done incorrectly, however, it can have an adverse effect, as you can probably imagine.
As important as it is to draft an estate plan, it's far more important to know what you are including in it and then passing this information on to loved ones. Making your son or daughter your power of attorney may seem like a good idea to you; but if you don't prepare them ahead of time for their responsibilities, they may feel overwhelmed by the decisions they have to make, perhaps even fearing that they are making choices you wouldn't have made.
Talking to an attorney while drafting an estate plan is a good idea because not only can they advise you on the documents you may need in your estate plan, they can help you explain your plan to your loved ones. Remember: you can never plan too much with an estate plan. Talking to an attorney simply ensures that you are making plans correctly and in your best interests.