Estate planning is important for every responsible adult. People who are younger sometimes do not see the need, but anything can happen to anyone at any time, and it is important to be prepared. At minimum, you should have a last will stating your final wishes, even if you are a relatively young adult.
At the same time, a last will is not the only vehicle of asset transfer that can be utilized, and it is not always the best choice. There are a number of different trusts that can accomplish varying objectives. You should explore all of your options and make fully informed decisions.
One type of trust that is often used is the revocable living trust. If you were to have a living trust, you would still need a will called a pour-over will. This will would allow the trust to capture assets there were in your personal possession at the time of your death.
The facilitation of asset transfers is not the only thing to think about when you are planning your estate. People do not typically pass away after being perfectly healthy during the days, months, and weeks that preceded their deaths. Latter life incapacity is not uncommon, and you should prepare for this in advance when you are planning your estate.
This is done in part through the execution of documents called advance directives for health care. One of these directives is a living will. This type of will has nothing to do with money. A living will is used to state your wishes regarding the utilization of life-sustaining measures like feeding tubes and mechanical respiration.
When you have a living will in place, doctors would be legally compelled to follow your instructions if you were to become incapacitated and unable to communicate.
There is another type of will that many people are not aware of called an ethical will. This type of will has been used since biblical times. You would use an ethical will to record moral and spiritual values that your loved ones could draw from after your passing.
An ethical will is not legally binding in any way, but it can be a very meaningful addition to your estate plan.
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