Estate Planning – Why It’s Important

Put simply, estate planning is a series of decisions you make on how you want your belongings, finances, property and possessions handled in the event of your death, or severe illness. Making a Will and a Power of Attorney is all part of it and as this can be a complicated matter the help of a solicitor can be helpful.

What is your estate?

A person’s ‘estate’ is everything that is owned by them when they pass away. Their estate might include houses, cars, savings, and insurance policies. It can also include personal possessions and furniture.

The end of your life is something many of us would rather avoid thinking about and many of us never consider estate planning as relevant to them. However, thinking ahead and planning in advance is important for many reasons.

In this post, we will explore four reasons why estate planning is important for you, and the future of your loved ones.

Peace of mind

Estate planning can bring peace of mind to yourself, and your loved ones should difficult circumstances arise. When practicalities and arrangements are taken care of it means that your family has the freedom to focus on personal matters without complications.

When decisions are made in advance regarding who manages your money while you are ill, who gets the property, and how your belongings are distributed, you can rest assured that your legacy is in the hands of the people it rightfully belongs to and will benefit from it most. You won’t have to worry about the wellbeing of your relatives, and you can enjoy life knowing that all is taken care of.

Provides for your loved ones

As well as deciding who receives your assets when you pass away, an estate plan can help your family by cutting down any inheritance tax charges they could face. It empowers you to decide who receives your assets. When you make a Will, your estate is distributed in accordance with your own wishes. Without a Will, the court must decide how your assets are distributed, which could result in them ending up with someone you may not wish to receive them or, worse still, going to the Crown.

Organising your records

When someone passes away whoever is managing their assets will need to have access to their records and documents. If these matters have not been organised in advance, it may be a complicated process for your loved ones to search for documents, digital assets, contacts, and other things.

Organising your records should be among your highest priorities when planning your estate. This includes not only tangible assets such as savings and investments or property but also intangible assets such as digital currencies, PayPal accounts, social media accounts etc. Your solicitor will be able to advise you on the best way to do this.

Gives you control over what happens

If a person passes away without a Will in place, the law decides to whom and how distribution of their estate is conducted.

When you have a Will, you can rest assured that your wishes will be complied with your Executors being legally required to abide by the directions made in your will.

How solicitors can help you

When you work with a solicitor when planning your estate, you will receive expert guidance and advice when weighing up the pros and cons of your decisions. They will handle the administrative aspect of your financial planning, carrying out calculations, and drawing up the necessary documents.

Here at Calthrops, our team of wills, probate and estate planning specialists are available to provide any information you need. To get in touch, find our contact details here.