Many people probably put off estate planning because they find the vast array of potential options too daunting. They don’t know where to start, so they don’t start at all. However, just because there may be a wide range of estate planning options for any given person doesn’t mean that the options will be overwhelming. So, what are your options in the estate planning process?
Well, for the most part, Wisconsin residents will likely hear about some of the main estate planning instruments that are usually part of a “comprehensive” plan: wills, trusts, power of attorney documents and healthcare directives. Will every estate plan include all of these options? Probably not. But many probably will, so most people can benefit from hearing about how these particular documents work and how they will impact an estate plan.
Wills, for example, are documents that can spell out exactly how you would like your estate and assets distributed, among other details. Trusts can also be useful instruments for distributing assets as well, and have the added benefit of not being subject to the probate process, in most cases. Power of attorney documents appoint another individual to make important financial or healthcare decisions in the event you become incapacitated and are unable to do so. Healthcare directives are instructions for what types of medical care you want or don’t want, so that family members and healthcare professionals have some direction on your wishes in the event you are not able to express those wishes.
At our law firm, we understand that the prospect of drafting a comprehensive estate plan can seem daunting. However, we work with our clients in Wisconsin to attempt to make sure that they understand the options that work best for their own unique family and financial situations. For more information, please visit the estate planning overview section of our law firm’s website.