Many people know that having an estate plan in place is a good idea. Yet, many New Jersey residents do not. If they do, there is a fair chance that it was not set up as well as it could be or that it needs updating. Careful estate planning is required to ensure the probate process is easy for one's heirs, so it is worth taking the time to get it done right.
Many people in New Jersey give money and/or their time to charitable organizations while they are alive. Some people, though, prefer to give after they leave this life. Wanting all or part of one's estate to go to charity is an honorable thing. If this is something one desires, it requires careful estate planning. Here are three ways one can ensure the charity or charities of one's choice get the money set aside for them.
Putting together an estate plan is something many New Jersey residents believe is for individuals entering their golden years. It is not just for that particular population, though. Estate planning is something that can be done by adults of any age.
Those in New Jersey or elsewhere who would like to make sure they, their loved ones and their assets are protected should consider putting together an estate plan. Few people do, though. While estate planning certainly has its place, for those who are not quite ready to take that step, making sure beneficiary designations are up to date is the next best thing they can do for themselves.
Estate planning is not something many New Jersey residents think is important -- or at least not important right now. It is something people do later in life, or it is for people who have significant assets, right? Wrong. It is for anyone who wants to protect their loved ones, their assets and, most importantly, themselves. When it comes to personal protection, having a health care directive is a must.
Myths, by definition, are widely held beliefs or ideas that are actually false. There are many myths about estate planning, and these false beliefs are often enough to stop numerous New Jersey residents from getting their estate plans prepared. This week, this column will discuss estate planning myths versus reality in the hopes of encouraging people to take the time to get their estate planning done.
Few people in New Jersey have or want to create wills. Even fewer want to take the time to go to an attorney's office to go through the entire estate planning process. Electronic wills are being pushed for across the country, as people like the idea of them. They are not yet available to New Jersey residents, though, and that may not be a bad thing.
There is value in planning for what is to happen to one's estate. An estate plan gives guidance to loved ones and lets them know what one wants for them. According to a recently published article, there is also value in discussing these plans with beneficiaries. Why might New Jersey residents want to do this?
Preparing a living trust can help New Jersey residents ensure their property is passed on to the appropriate beneficiaries when the time comes. However, a trust is only good if it is funded, which some people fail to do. When this happens, an estate becomes subject to the probate process, and absent a last will and testament, the state may have to decide how and to whom one's assets are divided. Creating a pour-over will when going through trust-based estate planning can help ensure assets make it into the right hands.
Too few New Jersey residents have estate plans in place. Of those who do, some may not have them stored adequately so that they do their loved ones any good. Estate planning does not just involve planning for one's assets, loved ones and self-protection; it includes planning for proper document storage as well.