If you have any kind of possessions, even if it is only a house and car, it is important to get estate planning advice and the best people to give it are lawyers, since they know all about the legal aspects and what can be done. People with many assets or a business see the need for estate planning, but often those with fewer assets don’t bother with it.
This is a mistake, because estate planning also includes making a Will and if you don’t have one when you die, your estate may not go to your preferred heirs. In fact, if you only have a house, most of the value could well be taken up with the court costs and fees that will be incurred to settle the estate. So your children or spouse could end up with next to nothing.
Having a Will can also prevent bad feeling amongst the family that is likely when each one vies for their share – or decides that they should get the most assets. Estate planning will also reduce the tax that must be paid and it can provide for children who are under age or who you don’t trust to handle a large amount of money wisely. This will be in the form of a trust that can pay out small amounts or keep it all until they become more mature at a certain age that you can specify.
No matter what your assets are, to make the most of them you need professional legal advice. Of course, if you have business interests and a lot of other assets, such advice is absolutely essential to ensure your wishes are adhered to after you are gone. Otherwise you won’t know who is going to get what and your favourite people could well miss out entirely.
But it is not only what happens after you have gone that is important. Often, you can change your business assets somehow to ensure your heirs are well taken care of, but this has to be done while you are alive and in possession of all your faculties. That is why good advice should be sought as soon as possible; it takes time to make such changes and you want to have it all finalised while you are able to. That way there can be no argument that you were not mentally capable, in order to change things to someone else’s benefit.
So don’t leave your estate planning to the last minute, because no one knows when that will be. It is a wise person who gets all their affairs in order as soon as possible and ensures that upgrades when their circumstances change over time continue to reflect their wishes.