Tips For Creating An Estate Plan When Single

estate plan

When single, your future is
automatically more ambiguous. There are no obvious benefactors or trustees that
are typically seen with married couples. Working with an estate planning
attorney will streamline the process and quickly dismiss any questions/concerns
family members may have upon your death.

Year after year slips by, a life filled with distractions diverting your attention from seemingly less pertinent matters. Estate planning is easy to forget about when your spending hours building an empire, creating new memories, and living life in the moment. As retirement approaches, it becomes imperative to create a solid estate plan.

Implementing the right estate planning strategies with an attorney who specializes in estate planning can make the transition into retirement much more relaxing and stress free. These strategies include examining the structural procedures of creating a will, selecting a power of attorney, and creating an end of life plan.

Single people
must also consider things like estate taxes and dying intestate when creating
an end of life plan. These elements aren’t typically regarded by single people
until it’s too late.

Up Your Will

Draw a road map for how you desire your assets shared
and whom you wish to be executor. Without a will, your assets will be
distributed according to state law.

A will is a set of legal instructions detailing the distribution of an individual’s assets upon death. Drafting a will with an accredited estate planning attorney is vital to help alleviate any caveats and disparities in policy.

Appointing an executor and beneficiary is an
important aspect of setting up your will. An executor revises any remaining
financial issues such as debts, taxes, loans, etc and probating your will if
required. A beneficiary is a person who assumes financial assets, property, and
material possessions upon another’s death. A revocable trust should be drafted
in one’s lifetime with an estate planning lawyer to specify each beneficiaries
cut of assets so there are no disputes later. An irrevocable trust should also
be strongly considered if you have assets sought after by creditors and

Selecting a Power of Attorney

A power of
attorney is another key component when estate planning, particularly for single
people. In the instance of a married couple, it is typically assumed that each
partner acts as power of attorney should one partner become incapacitated.
Single people don’t have this luxury. Thus, assigning the power of attorney to
a trusted entity permits that individual to make decisions when you are

When single,
power of attorney is a position requiring legal documentation, especially when
dealing with medical care and financial obligations. A person can delegate
different people to act as power of attorney for a multitude of appointments,
including: house payments, medical care, pet care, and business obligations.

Creating Your End of Life Plan

An end of
life plan acts as a directive to how you want to be handled should you be
incapacitated beyond repair. An estate planning attorney can assist in creating
a legally upheld document detailed all these procedures. Death is a common
theme in the 21st century, but on an individual level, it is often ignored with
the “out of sight, out of mind” notion prevalent. People neglect creating an
end of life plan due to the melancholy nature of the plan, but it is critical,
especially for single people.

End of life
plans typically detail directives including:

  • End-of-Life
  • Memorial
    Service Guidelines including location, budget, burial style, etc
  • Obituary
  • Advanced
    Healthcare Directive
  • Will

Having a
concrete end of life plan makes the transition much easier for the bereaved and
is something to strongly consider when approaching retirement as a single
individual. Speaking with an estate planning lawyer is ideal when creating an
end of life plan for clarity and

Are Outstanding Estate Taxes

couples possess assets jointly, unlike singles, and can leave it to the
surviving partner without paying estate taxes. However, a single person’s
estate can be caught with estate taxes if the amount of the assets surpasses
the federal estate tax exclusion. Because this has been growing, states have
begun imposing a state-level estate tax. So individuals may wish to consider
setting up a trust that can help lessen estate tax.

individuals do not mind if their beneficiaries get less while the government
gets more. After all, the beneficiaries are getting a windfall anyway so what
do a little amount of taxes matter? But there are other estate planning options
to consider if you do care. For example, you may wish to look at charitable
planning as a way to decrease taxes and turn to those charitable organizations
that have performed a vital role in your life. Or you may think to make
lifetime gifts to friends and family. Clients of professional attorneys
sometimes inquire if they should get married to take benefits of the increased
estate tax savings that couples have. If this is the only basis for the
marriage, the answer to that is no.

What Happens If I Die Without A

intestate refers to an individual passes away without a valid will. In this
situation, the assets will be distributed according to the state laws where he
or she resided. Commonly, the estate disburses as follows:

•           Parents (if Surviving)

•           Brothers and sisters

•           Close Relatives

The law
doesn’t take the nature of your personal relationships under regard. Any ill
will or favorites will be disregarded after your demise.

It is
crucial for single people to create a concrete end of life plan detailing every
aspect of your life up to death and how things are to be disbursed/handled
after. If not for yourself, this process should be done for your benefactors.
The first step in the process should always be to consult with an estate
planning lawyer.

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