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What are the elements of estate planning?

On Behalf of | Aug 24, 2021 | Estate Planning and Probate |

Estate planning represents deliberate steps to deal with current health and financial responsibilities while also anticipating the impact passing away has on Washington family members and others. A decision to write a will often serves as the initial motivation to take part in estate planning. Other essential components might factor into the process as well.

Basic components of estate planning

Again, writing a will stands as an essential part of estate planning. To clarify, writing a legal and valid will is necessary. Any will that fails to meet Washington’s statutory requirements may face rejection in probate court. Making sure the document adheres to the law is critical.

Does the will reflect current wishes? Has the testator decided to update the beneficiaries or make changes? These steps would be helpful, and so would updating beneficiaries on any transfer on death accounts.

Is a will the appropriate document to write? Estate planning decisions might involve creating a trust, which would give the planner more decision-making abilities.

Drawing up power of attorney documents might be helpful when someone wants to transfer financial decision making to a trusted representative. Sometimes, letting a trusted agent handles several responsibilities may be the right plan.

Further estate planning decisions

Health care power of attorney documents give representative authority over medical decisions to another person. When someone becomes incapacitated or otherwise unable to make competent medical decisions, turning the duties to another person in advance could make life easier for family members if a medical emergency arises.

Estate planning may involve putting together an informational portfolio. A sealed envelope could include both bank account and safe deposit box information. Digital passwords may appear in the file as well. Compiling the file may allow beneficiaries and the administrator to move forward during probate without delays.