What is the Difference Between Will and Estate Planning?

It is very important to understand the difference between Will and estate planning!

A Will is just one document in a complete estate plan.

A Will, also known as a Last Will and Testament, is the document that tells the world how you want your final probate estate distributed.  This will happen in probate under a Judge’s supervision.

Estate planning is the process of arranging for care and management of you, your family, your money, and other property during your lifetime and beyond.  It consists of a process and several documents.  The process uncovers your goals and wishes which are then memorialized in documents.  Those documents are:

  • Last Will and Testament
  • Trust (maybe)
  • Durable Power of Attorney
  • Healthcare Power of Attorney
  • Protected Healthcare Information Release (PHI release or HIPAA Waiver)
  • Advance Directive (Living Will)

See Also