Many people in Florida think of estate planning as a task for senior citizens or people with a very high net worth. However, even young, healthy people with modest means can benefit from creating an estate plan. By formulating certain key documents, people can make sure that their assets are distributed as they would like in case of any unfortunate incident or occurrence. In addition, people of any age can strongly benefit from having the right documents in place that can ensure their wishes are taken into account in case they become incapacitated.
While estate planning is geared toward managing a person’s assets in case of incapacity or death, it can also prompt thinking about future plans, family relations and other key issues. One of the simplest and most common documents involved in creating an estate plan is a will. This written document provides instructions for how a person’s belongings are to be distributed after his or her death. The will go through probate, a legal process that verifies the will and begins to put its directions into practice.
While a will is one of the most common estate documents, it is far from the only important one. Powers of attorney can be created that name a person to act on behalf of another person in the case of incapacity, such as dealing with financial matters. By creating a durable power of attorney, the document would remain in force even when the creator is no longer able to make decisions.
When thinking about the future and how to plan for a person’s assets, an estate planning attorney can help. There might be other documents that could be useful, including one or more types of trusts.