Purpose of Estate Planning

purpose of estate planning

The purpose of estate planning is several fold.  You have many reasons you want to plan.  Here are some of them:

  • Avoid Probate.  The only way to keep your family out of probate court is to put a plan in writing. Without a written plan, or a written plan of just a Last Will and Testament, your family will have to go through the hassles of Probate. (Yes, if you only have a Will, probate is required!)
  • Protect You.  You have the right to decide who will manage your affairs and take care of you if you can’t make those decisions – if you put them in writing the proper way.  Telling your family what you want is not legally binding.  Writing it down on a piece of paper isn’t usually legally binding.  You need to write down your choices in a Durable Power of Attorney, Healthcare Power of Attorney, and “Living Will.”  Only then can your family be 99.9999% assured of staying out of court.
  • Protect Your Family.
    • Special needs children don’t need to be disinherited.  You can leave them money in a special way that won’t affect their government means tested benefits.
    • Children with addictions can be provided for without giving them a lump sum.
    • Children who spend money as fast as they can get it – they can have their inheritance spread out
    • Children with credit issues can have their inheritance protected from creditors.
  • Protect Your Money. During your lifetime, you protect your money if you put a plan in writing that includes a Trust and a Durable Power of Attorney.  These two parts of your plan work together to provide for management of your assets during your lifetime.  Keep your money in the family by protecting it against any future divorce your children may go through with a Trust.

That is the purpose of estate planning.

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