Many retirement-age adults have amassed valuable assets over the years, from real estate to jewelry collections to savings accounts. Most people work hard for such assets and want them to remain in the family. Unfortunately, many people never make official decisions about who will inherit what, or who will assume your responsibilities once you’re gone.
Estate planning is crucial for ensuring everything is taken care of in the long run. Don’t rationalize that you’re too young or don’t have enough money to make estate planning worth it. Regardless of your age or net worth, if you have a family, estate planning is important.
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Establish Who Inherits Your Assets
Estate planning lets you decide which family members inherit your assets and how they receive them. This is beneficial in any situation, but especially if you come from a blended family with children from multiple marriages.
Estate planning also helps keep assets in the family, allowing you to choose grandchildren as benefactors rather than your deceased son’s divorced spouse. Without a plan, the law determines inheritance, and the results may not end up matching your wishes.
Create Financial Security for Your Family
Estate planning includes securing life insurance, which is especially important if you’re the primary moneymaker in your family. This helps your surviving family members enjoy financial security after you’re gone so they aren’t forced to give up the assets you left them.
Pass on Your Business
If you own a business, you worked hard to make it where you are now. Estate planning gives you the opportunity to name a successor, eliminating the risk that your family could lose control of the business once you’re gone.
Nominate a Legal Guardian for Your Children
Without a plan, the court decides who will raise your underage children if you and your spouse pass away. Estate planning lets you nominate a guardian, such as the children’s aunt or uncle, to make the transition as smooth as possible for your family. You also have the chance to set up a Supplemental Needs Trust to allow your special needs children to remain eligible for government benefits.
Improper estate planning creates complications for your family. Inheritances many be delayed, excess fees may be incurred and your assets will go on public record. Well thought-out estate planning keeps things structured, private and more affordable so your family can avoid the consequences of probate altogether.
Estate Planning in Maryland
When it comes to estate planning, trust the experts. The team at Hammond & Associates works with families like yours in the Montgomery County area to make sure you’re making the right choices. If you have questions about estate planning, get in touch with our experts today by filling out a contact form today.