Uncertainty is something that often causes discomfort. However, it can be empowering to be prepared for what could happen in the future in the event of disability or death. This is why estate planning is so critical for families in Texas and other states.
Incapacity, in particular, can happen in several ways without a warning. In the event of a physical or mental disability, it is important to ask who will end up managing one’s health care decisions, legal affairs and assets. An advance health care directive can be used to authorize a selected representative to complete these tasks at the appointed time.
In addition, in the event of death, it is important to make sure that beneficiary designations are updated. This is necessary for assets such as annuities and retirement accounts. Not only the primary beneficiary but also the first alternative beneficiary must be updated if he or she dies earlier than expected.
It is common to want to avoid or put off creating an estate plan, as it is considered a bit of a morbid task. However, it is best to engage in estate planning as soon as possible when there is no rush, as the chances of getting it done comprehensively and correctly are higher. In addition, it is critical that an estate plan be reviewed and updated regularly to reflect changes in the law in the state of Texas, changes in the family or changes in the wishes of the plan creator. An attorney can help with developing an estate plan, a process that is multifaceted, detailed and demands careful consideration.
Source: record-bee.com, “Uncertainty and estate planning“, Dennis Fordham, March 21, 2017