Almost any Georgia adult could benefit by creating an estate plan. This is true regardless of a person’s monetary status as such a plan can account for more than just the transfer of assets. For example, it could also determine who would be reponsible for a minor child in the event that a parent became incapacitated or died suddenly.
An estate plan should name an individual to act as a medical and financial agent. It is also a good idea to create a durable power of attorney to oversee property in the event a person becomes incapacitated. Without this power of attorney, not even a spouse may be allowed to sell assets to raise funds to pay for medical care or pay other bills. The only exception would be if an asset was jointly owned by a married couple.
Creating a beneficiary for a 401(k) or similar account makes it easier to ensure that the proceeds go to the proper parties. It is also important that beneficiary designations are reviewed on a regular basis to make sure that they still make sense. Finally, an individual should take an inventory of all of his or her possessions to ensure that everything is accounted for within the estate plan.
The use of wills and trusts may make it easier for a person to protect assets This is because the language in a trust may limit how an asset is used by a beneficiary or group of beneficiaries. An attorney may be able to explain how a will, trust or other plan document could help a person meet his or her goals. An attorney may also help to review plan documents already in existence.