Wolf, Baldwin & Associates, P.C.

You should start planning your estate as early as possible

It's easy to put off creating a last will or estate plan. Life is busy, and there's always something more immediately pressing to take care of instead. However, the longer you put off working on a last will or estate plan, the more risk you create for your family and the people you love.

For your own peace of mind, as well as for the protection of your family and your assets, you should seriously consider creating a last will.

A last will allows you to create a legacy with the assets you've acquired in life. It also lets you protect your loved one. Without a last will, your assets could wind up in probate court or assigned to someone other than your preferred beneficiary. Instead of putting off this process indefinitely, you should take control and get it started as soon as possible.

Those who have a spouse, child or home need a last will

You may think that you're young enough to have decades ahead for planning. While that may be true, you shouldn't leave anything to chance when you have significant assets or people who depend on you. If you are a single parent, you absolutely need to name someone as guardian in the event that you die while your child is still a minor. Barring that, your child could end up in foster care or other unacceptable living situations.

If you're married, both your spouse and any children you have will benefit from the security and quick transition of assets a last will can provide. Similarly, if you have substantial assets, like a home, it makes sense to name a person who will receive those assets upon your death. Barring that, the state will allocate those possessions to your family members without regard to your wishes or preferences in life.

You can always revisit your will later to update it

One common excuse people give for failing to create a last will or estate plan is that their lives are still changing. Perhaps you're married but plan on having children. Maybe you have a child, but you want more. The truth is that creating a last will now provides for your current family, but you will always have the option of updating the plan in the future.

Once you create your last will, you should make a point of reviewing it annually, as well as when you experience any major life changes. These could include marriage, divorce, the birth of a child, the death of an heir or other significant shifts in your family. Updating your last will can be a quick and simple process once you have an estate plan in place. Don't wait until you're approaching retirement age. Start thinking about your last will and legacy today.

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