You are not looking forward to estate planning, are you? It might seem like a plan that won't benefit you - but that couldn't be further from the truth! Estate planning takes a small amount of time and energy now and provides you an immediate sense of financial comfort, and a tremendous amount of benefit for the future. It has everything to do with you. Most clients come out of estate planning sessions more educated about their current goals – both financial and otherwise. It’s a time of dreaming and goal discussions.
The steps to estate planning really shouldn't vary too much attorney to attorney – if they are qualified. One component that does change is how many appointments and advisors you need to complete your plan. That's probably the best things about a multidisciplinary practice. It’s like a one-stop-shop of meaningful advice and implementation.
So let's dig into our estate planning process.
We prefer to start with a review of what you already have in place, so you'll want to come prepared. By bringing along items like wills, trusts, life insurance, healthcare documents, and power of attorney, to give us a starting place. We encourage you to take some time before we meet to think about what happens if you were to need this estate plan while you are still alive. That would be in the event of a significant accident or illness that left you unable to handle your affairs or required access to some of your funds now.
You will want to think about who you would want handling your healthcare and financial decisions, and what you want those decisions to be. If you have minor children, that becomes an essential discussion point. We will help you assure that your illness or disability is not a burden on others and that you have a say in how you want your life decisions to be handled.
The discussion should move from what happens if you are disabled into what happens in the event of your death. Unpleasant? Yes. Necessary? Absolutely.
For many of our clients, this discussion centers around children and grandchildren. It's through our children and grandchildren that we see our goals and dreams realized. An estate planning session with VIP Financial Matters assures you have control over the assets you’ve worked so hard to pass along to your heirs after you are gone.
And let's not forget about everyone's favorite topic - tax planning. It's always our goal to enable you to use and leave the most money without unnecessary tax burdens. Without a proper plan, beneficiaries can be saddled with unnecessary costs. It is essential to take the time to estate plan now, to assure your heirs have the smallest possible tax burden in the future.
Did you know that according to a survey done by NextAvenue.org, 75 percent of respondents said leaving a legacy is about "having made a positive impact on society"? The majority of us want to make a positive impact on our world, and one way we can do that is by ensuring that our wishes are fulfilled. This can certainly be about leaving money behind, but it can also be about leaving assets, such as land, education, and more. We do this through wills and trusts. Exploring, capturing, and then implementing your goals and dreams is where the real magic happens.
Estate planning is a part of retirement planning as well as an integral part of your current financial planning. It's planning to live the life you want, disabled or not; and to leave the legacy, you wish to. To assure your goals and dreams are fulfilled from a financial perspective. To allow your legacy to continue to the next generation and beyond.
Let us help you start or continue the process.