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Estate planning things to do and not do

On Behalf of | Dec 29, 2022 | Estate Administration & Probate, Estate Planning |

If you’ve never worked on an estate plan before, the prospect may sound daunting. Many Maryland residents have questions about what they should and shouldn’t do during estate planning.

Do make a will

Many people wonder when it is they need to consider estate planning. As a simple rule, if others are financially dependent on you, such as children, a spouse, or your parents, it’s time to draw up a will. This way there are no questions about what to do with your assets. Without a will, your loved ones must go through a probate period to distribute your assets after your passing.

Do seek out advice from experts

Financial planners, for example, can help you understand the best way to preserve the value of your assets and minimize taxes.

Do be thorough

Consider things like your retirement accounts, expensive paintings, and anything else you have directives for in the case of your passing.

Don’t put off drawing up a will

This process can be overwhelming and does make many people uncomfortable, but having it done usually offers peace of mind.

Don’t fail to make updates

Review your estate planning over the years. Anytime you have a significant life change, like a divorce or a major change in your assets, it’s a good time to update your will.

Don’t skip a living will

This is sometimes called an advance directive. A living will includes directions that clarify what you want to happen if you cannot speak for yourself. Along these same lines, it’s a good idea to name a durable power of attorney.

By being thorough, and doing regular updates, you can be sure that your estate is well handled in the event anything unexpected happens.