Creating an estate plan is a crucial task for anyone who wants to ensure that their assets and their loved ones are protected after they pass away. While it is always recommended to seek the assistance of an attorney for creating an estate plan, it is possible to create a basic plan on your own. Here are some steps to help you create your own estate plan without an attorney.
Take Inventory of Your Assets
Before you start creating your estate plan, it is important to know what assets you have. Make a list of your bank accounts, investments, real estate, vehicles, and personal property. This will help you determine what you want to include in your estate plan.
Determine Your Beneficiaries
Decide who you want to receive your assets when you pass away. You can name specific individuals, charities, or organizations. Make sure to include alternate beneficiaries in case your primary beneficiaries are unable to inherit your assets.
Choose an Executor
Select an executor who will be responsible for administering your estate when you pass away. This person will be responsible for distributing your assets to your beneficiaries, paying off any debts or taxes owed by your estate, and ensuring that your final wishes are carried out.
Create a Will
A will is a legal document that outlines how you want your assets to be distributed after you pass away. You can create a simple will on your own using online templates or software. Make sure to sign and date your will in the presence of witnesses who are not beneficiaries. Form America offers flat rate will completion that is State Specific and self proving for $249.
Consider a Living Trust
A living trust is a legal document that allows you to transfer your assets to a trust while you are still alive. The trust will be managed by a trustee, who will distribute your assets to your beneficiaries after you pass away. A living trust can help you avoid probate and provide more control over how your assets are distributed.
Create a Power of Attorney
A power of attorney is a legal document that allows someone to make financial or medical decisions on your behalf if you become incapacitated. You can create a power of attorney on your own using online templates or software. We believe every adult should have a financial power of attorney and an advance medical directive, all documents you can create yourself or with the assistance of Form America.
Review and Update Your Estate Plan
Once you have created your estate plan, it is important to review and update it periodically. Make sure to update your plan if there are any changes in your assets, beneficiaries, or executor.
In conclusion, creating an estate plan without an attorney is possible, but it requires careful planning and attention to detail. While a simple estate plan may be sufficient for some individuals, it is always recommended to seek the advice of an attorney to ensure that your final wishes are carried out as intended. Form America can help you with the paperwork if you decide to Do-It-Yourself. We’re not attorneys and we can’t give legal advice, but sometimes all you need is help filling out the paperwork. We’re based in Florida, and here to help. Visit www.FormAmerica.com to buy the forms, and we’ll get in touch to help you complete them.