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What Is an Estate Plan, Carter Capner Your estate is a collective word for all of your belongings, including your home

To distribute them to the person you wish to receive it, you need to have an estate plan. This will ensure your family’s security. Read on to learn more
To distribute them to the person you wish to receive it, you need to have an estate plan. This will ensure your family's security. Read on to learn more about estate planning.

What are the things needed in estate planning?

In order to ensure your estate plan will be executed properly, you will need the following documents:

  • • Last will – Your last will is a documented instruction on how a person wants their property distributed when they die. This is also used to specify who will look after your estate until it is distributed. If you have children, you can designate their guardian in your will if they are still dependant.
  • • Living will – A living will is similar to a last will. Your instructions in this document will be executed if you are struck with a terminal medical condition. This is where you can list the decisions to your doctors regarding your condition.
  • • Power of attorney – A power of attorney document is used to specify who can complete the decisions in your will. This authorisation is granted to the person when you are incapacitated.

How do I start my estate plan?

The first step in your estate planning is to make an inventory of all the assets you own. This includes your bank accounts, insurance, real estate and personal belongings. You must also list down the market value of each item listed. Check your insurance carefully. Determine if this will cover your children's education and if it allows your spouse to take care of the mortgage. You will also need to review your beneficiary as you might not have the right person written down.

The next step is to determine who should receive your property and how much they will receive. You will also need to choose your executor. They will be taking care of your property until it is distributed to the people you chose to receive it.

Finally, you need to complete the documents mentioned above such as your will and power of attorney. Make sure everything is properly signed and has the necessary instructions for your estate plan. Your will, for example, should be finalised in the presence of one or more witness. Ensure your executor and/or guardian's signature is included in your will.

Benefits of estate planning

The advantage of making your estate plan early is to provide peace of mind. In the event a person dies or is incapacitated without a will, their property is distributed by the state. The wrong person might receive your estate. Your dependent children might be left without the proper funding for their education and well-being. With an estate planning, you can ensure your family will be secure for the future and your assets will go to the right people.

If you are ready to make an estate plan, consider having a lawyer or a law firm to help you. They can assist you in ensuring your entire document and instructions are legally sound.

Author Bio:

Katherine Flowers writes for several websites including Carter Capner, Workplace Lawyers Gold Coast. She writes on topics that relates to legal, social, and technology.