Wills & Estates, November 23, 2023 - by Lypkie Henderson

Four Key Elements of Estate Planning

The way you make plans for the future necessarily changes over time. Early on, your plans might be all about investments, career growth, and more. Later, the time comes to think about how to steward the estate you’ve created. It’s an essential step for you and your family. Now could be the right time for you to begin exploring effective estate planning in Edmonton.

What do you need to know? What steps should you take? Working with Will lawyers in Edmonton can steer you in the right direction. First, though, you should consider what you’ll need to do along the way.

Define the details of your Will

The last Will and Testament is the most fundamental part of estate planning. It sets out your instructions about who should receive proceeds from your estate and in what amount. A detailed and well-written one helps to reduce conflict between heirs and streamlines the distribution process. Having a Will on file also simplifies elements of the probate process for your family, avoiding adding unnecessary additional stress to loved ones during a challenging time.

Designate someone to hold power of attorney

There’s no guarantee that you will always have the capacity to make important decisions for yourself regarding your assets, such as real estate. If you become incapacitated, it may take a court order for a family member to receive permission to take specific actions. With an enduring power of attorney that becomes active when you lose capacity, you can empower a trusted family member to make crucial financial decisions even when you can’t.

Consider crafting a Personal Directive for your healthcare and personal decisions

Just as you may not always have the chance to make decisions about your finances in the future, the same is true for your healthcare and other personal decisions. If you have specific wishes you’d like carried out regarding your healthcare and personal life, you should consider creating a Personal Directive. Most often, Personal Directives concern decisions surrounding life support and critical medical decisions in the event of severe health problems.  Personal Directives can also be written to indicate where you wish to live and who you wish to associate with.

Explore the creation of a trust for your estate

Setting up your assets in a trust can simplify the probate process for your family after you pass away and can also be tailored for unique situations while you are living. A trust holds your assets and facilitates transfers between you and your family members. Unlike a Will, which only discharges your assets upon death, you can transfer trust assets to others during your lifetime. This transference makes trusts a valuable and flexible tool for effective estate planning. Will lawyers in Edmonton can assist you with drawing up the documents and structuring a trust that makes sense for your estate.

Finding help with your estate is easy

With proper estate planning, Edmonton families can enjoy the peace of mind that comes from having a plan in place. In the future, you can trust that all the appropriate guardrails and directives will support you and your loved ones. Consider speaking with Lypkie Henderson today for friendly and experienced assistance in planning your estate.

Lypkie Henderson Author

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