Many individuals who are tasked with saying what comes to mind when they hear the term "estate planning" often mention wealthy, elderly individuals with kids drafting wills. This phrase means so much more than that though. Estate planning is an important process that all individuals, including those who are young, single, childless and have little means should also engage in.
It becomes increasingly important for a Medicaid recipient to engage in estate planning as they age. If they don't, then they risk losing access to the benefits that they rely upon for their long-term medical care.
A will is one of the most important parts of an estate planning arsenal. It details what you want to happen with your hard-earned money and most prized assets once you've passed away. It can also spell out your final wishes concerning burial or the scattering of your ashes. Each state has different criteria that must be met for a will to be considered as properly executed. North Carolina is no different in that respect.
Many individuals who participate in government programs such as Medicaid rely on the benefits that they receive for their survival. They wouldn't want to do anything that would jeopardize their access to health care or the other benefits they receive. It's important for anyone who receives government benefits to learn what can affect their eligibility for them.
When North Carolina parents find out that they're expecting a child for the first time, they often research what pregnancy is like, think about setting up a baby registry or pick out potential names for the child. It's unlikely that planning for their estate is at the top of their list of priorities. It should be though.
One estate planning tool you may want to consider is an incentive trust. While some believe they are a form of bribery as the heirs literally receive funds from toeing the line and/or hitting designated life milestones, others benefit a great deal from the carrot-and-stick approach.
The older most of us get, the more most of us start thinking about our retirement. While it's important for us all to make plans along the way to get our finances in order for when we retire, those last 10 years before we do are the most critical. Steps that you take during that last decade before you retire can have significant implications on the type of life that you're able to live once you end your career.
One of the most crucial aspects of developing your estate plan is determining who to name as your executor. This is the person who will oversee the disposition of your assets to your heirs and beneficiaries as you've designated. Your executor will also be responsible for paying any final bills, possibly selling your home and representing the estate in court if necessary.
Choosing an executor is one of the most crucial decisions you'll make as you develop your estate plan. If you don't designate an executor, the court will appoint someone to handle those responsibilities. Most people prefer to choose someone they know and trust.
When you begin working with your attorney on your estate plan, you'll be hearing a lot of terms that you're probably unfamiliar with. It's crucial to understand what they mean.