Naperville Lawyer on How Estate Planning Now Can Help You Prevent Family Arguments in the Future
As an estate planning attorney, I realize that it can be hard to know exactly how to divide your assets and property upon your death. Many people want to leave an inheritance for their children and other family members, but are unsure about who should get what. Asking family for input on inheritance and estate planning decisions can result in an assortment of answers. Some of your loved ones may suggest that you simply divide their inheritance equally. However, it can be hard to determine what “equally” really means. Regardless of what you decide, making estate planning decisions now instead of putting these decisions off is often the best way to prevent family arguments about inheritance in the future.
You Have the Right to Make Your Own Decisions Regarding Your Property
The fact of the matter is that who you leave your assets to upon your death is a deeply personal decision. It is entirely up to you to make estate planning decisions, but getting insight from your loved ones can sometimes be helpful. The way you divide your assets could have a major influence on your family and loved ones’ future. For example, leaving a sizable inheritance to a young person may result in him or her wasting that money through the ignorance of youth. On the other hand, a young heir may also be able to use their inheritance to go to college without accumulating thousands of dollars of debt in student loans.
Regardless of what you choose, many experts suggest letting family members know of your decisions in advance. This allows family members to be prepared for what to expect when you pass away. It also decreases the chances that your will, trust, or other estate planning documents will be challenged by disgruntled family members in probate court.
Consider What Should Happen if You Are Incapacitated
One major misconception about estate planning is that it is only about death. A comprehensive estate plan should not only address what happens to your assets if you pass away, but also how financial and healthcare decisions should be made if you cannot speak for yourself. If a sudden illness or accident left you unable to communicate your desires regarding end-of-life care, would your family know what you wanted? There are several estate planning tools, such as an Advanced Health Care Directive and Power of Attorney for Property, that allow you to dictate how decisions should be made on your behalf should you become incapacitated.
Contact a DuPage County Estate Planning Attorney
For more information about wills, trusts, inheritance, and other estate planning concerns, contact the experienced Naperville estate planning attorneys at the Gierach Law Firm. Call 630-756-1160 to schedule an initial consultation today. We can help you secure your future and that of your loved ones.