What was at the top of your to-do list in your 20’s and 30’s? Many millennials likely have graduating, getting a good job, traveling, and buying a home at the top of their lists. However, most don’t even consider estate planning. Thinking about estate planning early on is important for success later in life.
It is never too early to start thinking about estate planning. According to this USA Today article, most people think of estate planning as something to start considering in your 50’s or 60’s. People think living wills, last wills and testaments, and power of attorney documents are only important later in life. This could not be further from the truth. It may seem like a foreign concept to many younger people. But in reality, everyone needs to think about estate planning.
Many millennials can be pretty financially responsible. Growing up during the recession and often with large student loans to pay off has made them this way. Many of them have already begun parenthood, caregiving, and other stressful commitments. Therefore, they view money differently than other generations. Yet being good with money is not enough. More than 60 percent of Americans don’t have a will, according to a 2015 Harris Poll. Yikes! Don’t you want control over where your assets go when you die? Or would you prefer to let the courts decide?
A full estate plan will include a health care directive. This will let doctors know how to care for you if you are unable to tell them. It will also include a durable power of attorney. This will ensure your finances and personal affairs are taken care of if you are not able to do so yourself. In addition, a good estate plan will include a Guardian for your children, should anything happen to you. It will also provide legal documentation for how you want your assets divided.
As you can see, estate planning is not just for older folks. Consulting with an attorney, financial adviser or licensed fiduciary is recommended to start the process. By planning your estate early on, you will save yourself and loved ones from unnecessary troubles later in life.
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