Top five estate planning to-dos

Checklist

ChecklistThis one is short and sweet. Here are my top five to-do items for estate planning:

  1.  Get a will. This makes sure that what you want to have happen on your death, will.
  2. Get a power of attorney for personal care, and include a living will in it. Without this, you have no say over who makes health care decisions for you if you can’t make them for yourself.
  3. Get a continuing power of attorney for property. Without this, you have no say in who manages your money if you become ill or injured. You want things in order for when you recover.
  4. Update your beneficiary designations. You can save a huge amount in taxes if you have the proper designations on file.
  5. Tell your family! No one likes a surprise when it comes to estate planning. Make sure your spouse, children, parents, siblings, etc. know what you have done and, more importantly, understand why.
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