An effective estate plan is a way to ensure you are able to enjoy your possessions as well as provide for those you love most after you are gone. An estate plan utilizes legal tools, such as wills and trusts to keep your assets safe. Unfortunately, many people make mistakes that cause them to lack the protection they need and which can be provided by an estate plan. Listed below are 5 of those most common mistakes.
Lack of Planning
Many people have every intention of executing an estate plan, but it is something they keep pushing off as they do not believe it is an urgent matter. While in reality, it is extremely important and should be handled without delay. No one knows how long they have left on this earth, and it is always best to be prepared for the unexpected.
Other people fail to execute an estate plan because they do not like to contemplate a time when they are no longer here. While this is understandable, it is not a good reason to push off something so important not only to the person making the estate plan but to those they care for and provide for.
An estate plan can only be effective if the counsel preparing the estate plan is privy to all the information and documentation available to the person they are preparing the plan for. In other words, if a person hires an attorney to prepare an estate plan for them, but fails to inform them about an important matter, such as land that they own in another state, the attorney preparing the estate plan will not be aware of the land and it will be omitted from the plan. It is essential that a person having an estate plan prepared provides all necessary information and documentation to their lawyer.
Failure to Update Documentation
Time moves on, and situations and circumstances change. Therefore, it is important to have it updated when something happens that affects the estate plan. For example, if a large tract of land at the heart of the estate plan is sold, the estate plan needs to be changed to reflect the sale.
Failure to Fund a Trust
A trust must be funded to be effective. In other words, the assets that fund the trust will actually need to be retitled into the name of the trust. Therefore, failure to properly fund a trust can wreak havoc on an estate plan.
Giving Away Too Many Inheritances Too Early
While there are benefits to gifting an inheritance early, it should not be at the cost of your own financial stability. Unfortunately, some people give away too much, affecting the ability to create an estate plan that provides them with the security they need.
Speak With a Florida Estate Planning Attorney
A Florida estate planning attorney at Martin Law Firm, P.L., can guide you in creating a personalized estate plan that meets all your short and long-term goals. Contact our firm today to learn more about what our firm can do for you. We may be reached by calling 239-323-9820 or via our contact page.