If you’ve ever thought about going through the estate planning process, it can feel a little overwhelming. You might find yourself asking the question: “where do I even start?”
There can be a lot of paperwork that you feel needs your attention and some of it can be difficult to understand, especially the legal documents.
To get the estate planning process started, here are some of the documents that you should have in place.
Last will and testament
Putting your wishes down in a will is probably the most important part of the entire estate planning process. It makes sure your loved ones know what should happen to your property and belongings after you pass away.
You can draft a will yourself but it’s a good idea to have some legal guidance. This helps to make sure there isn’t any ambiguity in the way it’s drafted that could be cause for disagreement or confusion later down the line. It’s especially important to have an attorney help you with your will if your wishes may otherwise be difficult to understand. During a meeting you will explain what you want and the attorney will draft the will. You then have to check it over and sign it.
Title and property deeds
You should keep all of your title and property deeds in a place where they can easily be found by the people administering your will. You can keep these in a safe but it’s important that you make sure you give someone the code so they can access them as and when they need to. You can also keep any passwords to online accounts alongside these documents too so that these can be closed where needed.
While it may feel morbid to think about, planning your funeral in advance can take a burden off your loved ones after you die. Even if you don’t pre-plan you can give them some instructions as to what you want to happen. If you have already planned and paid for your funeral, you should have these documents available so your loved ones know what to do and who to contact.
If you are ready to start the estate planning process, or are finding you need some guidance with legal documents, it’s a good idea to seek some assistance from someone who knows the forms well and can help.