A recent study from Harris Poll found that a majority of Americans, (64 percent), do not have a will or any type of formal estate plan in place. Of those surveyed, about 27 percent said they did not believe there was an urgent need to create one in the near future, while 15 percent said they didn’t believe they would ever need estate planning at all.
The results of this study do not come as a surprise for most estate planning attorneys. Many individuals put off estate planning for as long as possible, as the short-term demands of life can get in the way of long-term planning. In general, people do not like to think about what will happen after they pass away.
What studies tell us, however, is that nearly two-thirds of adults in the United States are in a situation in which their assets would be subject to intestate succession laws if they were to die without an established plan. If they have minor children, the state would appoint guardians for them. This would all happen without knowing or considering the decedent’s wishes.
Why is it so important to create an estate plan?
Estate planning should be a priority for individuals and families of all ages and from all walks of life. The following are just a few reasons why you should consult a King of Prussia estate planning attorney to prepare for the future of you and your loved ones:
You take control of your assets: If you die without a will, a court will distribute your assets and property to your beneficiaries. Creating a will gives you control over who receives which assets, and also gives you the ability to leave behind a letter explaining these decisions. This also can prevent conflict among your loved ones after your passing.
You can protect your children: With the help of an estate planning attorney, you may determine who would be the guardians for your children if you were to pass away before your kids turn 18. Otherwise, the state would select the guardians for you. Estate planning offers you the peace of mind that your children will be in good hands if the worst should happen.
You can avoid unnecessary taxes: If you have an estate that is close to the exemption limit for estate taxes, you may use a variety of tools to reduce or eliminate your obligations. These strategies could include setting up a trust or leaving money behind to charitable organizations or causes close to your heart.
Thinking about your estate plan and what will happen to your loved ones, your assets and your property after you have passed on is never an easy subject to address, but it is necessary for most Americans. Speak with an estate planning attorney to learn more about your options on how you can best protect your hard-earned wealth.
Contact our experienced Pennsylvania estate planning attorney
You should consult with experienced Pennsylvania estate planning trust attorney Joe Frabizzio to determine the best and most cost effective strategy for your family. Proper estate planning could help your family save tens of thousands of dollars in estate taxes and probate costs.
Call us for a free consultation to learn more: (610) 667-2988