There is a misconception that estate planning is something only reserved for the wealthy and famous or those with large estates. In reality, virtually every Texas adult could benefit from having even a basic estate plan. While people with children or valuable assets understand the need for this step, it is also important for single adults too.
Single adults may not assume they really need an estate plan, but your marital status has no bearing on your need to plan well for the future and protect your interests. If you do not have a plan, you could be unnecessarily taking risks with your money and your health care. Your long-term financial well-being and your right to decide what happens to your estate are worth protecting.
What should you do?
You may assume that since you do not have kids, you do not have a real need to explain your wishes. However, your health status could change at any moment, and it is beneficial to have a plan in place about what type of care you may want or what you want to happen to your personal property. Some smart estate planning steps for singles include:
- Through a health care proxy and power of attorney, you can outline what type of care you may want in case you cannot speak for yourself and specify a person to make medical decisions on your behalf.
- By drafting a will, you can decide what will happen to your money, savings and physical assets. You can even decide what will happen to your pets in case of your death.
- You can create a trust in order to set aside assets for a specific purpose after your death, such as the care of a loved one, charitable giving or other reason.
There is no time to lose in having the right protections in place now. You may be young, healthy and looking forward to what is ahead in life, but it is never too early to consider the benefits of estate planning.
Where should you start?
It's not always easy to know where to begin when drafting an estate plan. Whether you are starting from scratch or you need to update an existing plan, the time to act is now. The future is unpredictable, but you can have a measure of control with the right documents and plans. If you are single, you still have important estate planning needs you would be wise to address promptly.