During these trying times, we are reminded on a daily basis of our mortality. This why estate planning has become such a hot topic. And, in light of this renewed interest, this blog will dispel three common estate planning myths.
Only an attorney can draft estate planning documents
For single and childless young-adults, one likely does not need an attorney to physically draft estate planning documents. Many internet site can help draft simple documents, like a will and, and most hospitals have health care directive available for download. The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization also offers a state-specific health car directive form. Some employers even offer estate planning benefits for free or low cost. Of course, before finalizing them, one should have an attorney verify they are legally enforceable. Though, document review is much cheaper than actually drafting the documents.
Without a will, the state gets everything
If one believes this, one should already have an estate plan, right? But, that is not always the case. If one passes without a will though, the “laws of intestacy” determine who will get what after one passes. Contact a local attorney to see what that means, and if one does not like what they hear, draft an estate plan. Usually, these initial consultations are free. And, it should go without saying that, if one has children, they should have an estate plan because no one wants the state decided their child’s fate.
A will means no probate court
Often, people draft a will to avoid probate court because that process is long and can be extremely expensive. But, depending on the will, the state where one dies and where assets are located and the asset itself, a will may simply be guidance for the court.
As our Altoona, Pennsylvania, readers can see, estate planning can get complicated. This is why one should contact an attorney to craft and individualized and legally enforceable estate plan to ensure all of these issues are taken care of prior to one’s passing.