Our readers know that any person can benefit from having a plan for their end-of-life estate in place. A person’s estate constitutes the wealth and assets that they have amassed over time, and most people would prefer to decide what happens with their hard-earned money rather than allowing the state and the process of probate to intervene. Therefore, one of the biggest mistakes a person can make with regard to their estate plan is neglecting to execute one.
An estate plan does not need to be extensive, but it should be an accurate set of instructions for how the decedent’s estate should be divided up. If a person wishes to make changes to their estate they must do so according to the laws of the state – changes intended by a person, but not executed in their testamentary documents, may not be honored once they have passed on.
Additionally, individuals who do not plan to protect the size of their estates may be making big mistakes. The greater a person’s estate, the more they may end up paying in taxes, so individuals who wish to reduce their tax burdens and ensure that their wealth goes to the people they love should be aware of how gifts during their lifetimes can help reduce estate sizes and, therefore, financial liabilities.
There are many ways that individuals can make costly errors in the execution of their estates. However, getting the right information about estate planning options can help them avoid these mistakes and the expensive repercussions that can accompany them when estate planners pass away.