Are there some decisions you think, “I’ll do that when I’m older?” While there are some things that are OK to push off to tomorrow, there is one thing you need to do today. And that is your estate planning documents. We always think we can get to this later or we think this is a subject we don’t like to think about so it never gets done.
Today I’m going to break down the necessary documents for your estate plan. I’ll also discuss why these are important and also why you should do them now.
Two classifications are for when you are alive
POA of Healthcare
First is the POA or Power of Attorney for Healthcare. This is for when you are still alive, but maybe unconscious and cannot make decisions for yourself. You would need someone to make decisions for you during this time. If you are in an emergency and traveling away from home this is an important document to have. This gives authority to the person in the POA for Healthcare to make decisions regarding your healthcare.
POA of Property
Next is the POA for Property. This is just like healthcare but for when you need to pay a bill or move money from one account to another. You would name someone, and it doesn’t have to be the same person as the POA for Healthcare. Again this is for when you are alive and you need someone to act for you regarding your property.
Two classifications are for when you are deceased
Will & Trust
After you have passed away, what happens to your money you have saved? The will and trust are documents we hear commonly. Even though you may be younger and think you are saving these decisions or documents for when you are older, these are important now. As you are paying bills, saving money, and paying off debt, you are building up net worth. You probably care about who that money goes to, whether it is a sibling or family member.
One other thing to be thoughtful of is your beneficiaries. This isn’t one document that covers every account. This is where you need to be sure on your retirement accounts, your IRA, 401(k), and Life Insurance, who your beneficiaries are.
These are all really important and could be really easy to leave until we are “older” or more “mature”, but you want to deal with them today since they are important to take the time to consider. If you have any questions about estate planning documents or getting them in order, please let us know we would be happy to help!
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