Your estate plan is, to put it briefly, the sum total of your plans for your loved ones, your end-of-life, your assets, and your charitable hopes, and all of it put to paper. Naturally, a properly planned and executed estate plan will have a few key elements and a number of important documents. So how many pieces is that? It should depend upon your own estate and estate plan of course. Regardless, it’s also helpful to break down a basic estate plan and build a basic list.
There are a great number of little estate planning lists out there, and a dozen ways to list the documents you might need. That noted, MSN Money provided a helpful guide not too long ago with a helpful list of eight titled “Estate-Planning Documents You Need Right Now.”
- Last will and testament
- Revocable living trust
- Beneficiary designations
- Durable power of attorney
- Health care power of attorney and living will
- Provision for digital assets
- Letter of intent
- List of important documents
Now you might not need all of these elements. In the context of your plans, one or another may be all the more important and so all the more robust. However, these are the basics to consider as you get started.
The original article has more to say concerning each tool and some further resources besides.
Do you have unique goals, unique assets, or a unique family?
It’s very likely there is more to be done with these documents and a few useful tools besides. Whether your plan will be basic or advanced, it pays to ensure that your affairs are in order with the input and guidance of competent counsel.
Reference: MSN Money (April 18, 2014) “Estate-Planning Documents You Need Right Now”