When is the right time to consider estate planning?



You have just turned 40 and you are contemplating what your life will be like now that you are middle-aged. You realize you may want to start thinking about retirement and that your kids will need money to go to college someday. You are not even considering the possibility of estate planning because that’s something that one does when one is in one’s 60s.

Although life expectancy for the average American might be between 80 and 85, life happens, and so does death. You can go at any time, and you want your family to be provided for if you do. 

According to David Howard Goldberg P.L., it is better to plan for the end of your life when you are young and healthy. Many people wait until they are in the hospital to start thinking about things such as estate planning and their funeral expenses. 

Signs you Should Start Estate Planning

If you are in your twenties and living from paycheck to paycheck, you might not have much reason to plan for the disbursement of your estate. Your best friend knows they are getting your Beats, and your vintage records are going to your significant other. You should start planning your estate whenever you start saving money and making investments.

Do you have a savings account?

If you have just started a savings account and it has a couple of thousand dollars in it, you might want to start thinking about who you want the money to go to if you pass away. 

Have you recently tied the knot?

If you have recently married or divorced, you and your spouse will want to start making a plan for who will get your joint assets when you are no longer around. If you are getting a divorce, you will want to take your ex-spouse out of your will.

If there is no will, your property will go directly to your spouse when you die. However, there are some exceptions to the rule. 

You can leave a bank account to a payable on death beneficiary. This is a way of avoiding probate court by having the funds in that account go directly to the person you want them to go to. If you have assets of over $160,000, You may want to set up a trust for anyone that may be dependent upon you.

Are you planning to travel?

Before you plan that rock-climbing trip to Costa Rica or that Somalian sea cruise, you should update your will. If you have children, you will also want to figure out a custodian for them in the event that you do not return from your trip.

Do you own property?

If you own a house, a car, a boat, or another major piece of property, and you are not married and have no children, it is important to make a will, so you can leave those things to whomever you see fit. If you are married, your home will go to your spouse if they are still alive. If your spouse is also deceased, your property will be divided amongst your children unless you bequeath it to another party in your will.

It may seem like a grim way to spend your free time, but planning your estate when you are young can actually give you the peace of mind you will need to enjoy your golden years in the future.