Many people in Florida may consider estate planning something needed only by the very wealthy or by older persons. These beliefs, however, are not true. Virtually anyone can benefit from having an estate plan in place no matter how modest an estate may be. Regardless of an individual person’s situation, there are some common estate planning mistakes to be aware of and to avoid.
Investopedia notes that first and foremost, not having a plan is perhaps the biggest mistake of all. If nothing else, a will or trust can prevent conflict among family members after a death. Another way of accomplishing this is to give away some assets before death. This can also reduce the tax liability for heir who may otherwise pay taxes on inheritances.
Accounting Today warns against procrastinating as it can be a serious error because nobody can adequately predict when they will die. Even for people who do create a will or a trust, considering it a black-and-white document should not be done. Discussing and considering hypothetical situations and potential future changes is important because these things can and do happen. Divorce, remarriages and more are just some examples.
Of equal importance when developing any estate planning document is the updating of other materials such as life insurance beneficiaries and title ownership for assets held in a trust. Finally, executors and trust administrators need to have access to a person’s digital assets including all login and password information. Not documenting this data can leave a big hole and complicate many parts of the will execution or trust administration.