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Most Americans have not engaged in estate planning

The handling of financial needs at the end of life is one area that tends not to get much focus in American households, including in the state of Texas. After all, it is generally not comfortable to talk about death. A recent survey indicated that nearly 70 percent of Americans have thought seriously about estate planning, including writing wills, but only 34 percent have actually done it.

According to the survey, 95 percent of the respondents also said they are not good at planning how their estates will be handled. They claimed that they do not have the financial tools and knowledge needed to create wills and other estate planning documents. In reality, many resources are available for creating a proper estate plan. These include accountants and financial planners who specialize in the estate planning field.

An important consideration is who will end up taking care of one's estate down the road in the event that death strikes. It might not be children or a spouse if financial management is not their strong suit. An important next step is selecting an estate planning attorney, who can provide specific advice for a given estate situation.

When creating an estate plan in Texas, having a flexible vision is paramount. Estate tax laws are constantly changing, and estate tax exemptions are increasing, so accounting for this is necessary when updating an estate plan. In the end, well-thought-out estate planning can provide a peace of mind and ensure that loved ones receive the assets intended for them in the future.

Source: thestreet.com, "5 Great Estate Planning Tips for the Rest of Your Life", Brian O'Connell, Feb. 22, 2017

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