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Estate planning involves choosing beneficiaries

When the topic of creating an estate plan comes up, creating wills is often the first idea that comes to mind. Part of the process of creating a will in Texas is choosing beneficiaries of the assets that will be passed on after one dies. The beneficiaries chosen in the estate planning process could be people or organizations.

It is common for people who have no children, in particular, to consider naming their nephews and nieces as beneficiaries in their wills. However, before doing this, it may be beneficial to speak with family members about such gifts. This additional layer of communication may help to prevent unnecessary confusion, frustration or conflict in the future.

In addition, assets can be left as gifts for various charities. Still, from the perspective of taxes, making a charitable contribution while still alive is actually more efficient. After all, the donor will get not only a gift tax deduction but also an income tax deduction, depending on the gift size. A charitable foundation can also be set up, with instructions provided for distributing money over time. Setting up such foundations is a relatively straightforward process, although people will have to be chosen to run these entities.

The topic of estate planning is often considered morbid, which keeps many people in Texas and other states from wanting to embark on it. However, failure to create an estate plan means assets may not end up in intended hands down the road. An attorney can offer guidance on how to create an estate plan that most effectively reflects one's needs.

Source: yahoo.com, "Estate Planning Is Important for People Without Children", Debbie Carlson, Feb. 16, 2017

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