When people pass away without an estate plan in Seattle, their family has a two-edged sword to manage. First, they are dealing with the grief and deep emotions of losing someone they loved. Second, they are working through mounds of loose ends to finalize the affairs of their deceased family member. The effort of people to prepare for death by establishing an estate plan long before they anticipate needing one can make a tremendous difference in the pressure and tension their surviving family members may feel later on.
An estate plan can reduce the need for a person’s family members to have to resort to probate to solve disputes. Experts say that even the most efficient probate cases can take upwards of six months to finalize. Family members often lose out on inheriting certain assets because nothing formal was signed by their deceased family member. Another critical reason for people to make an estate plan is to establish caretakers for any dependents. This decision allows them to place their children with people they trust.
With an estate plan in place, people may be able to reduce the financial strain of heavy taxes that their surviving family members may be required to pay after death happens. People have the chance to personally allocate their assets and personal possessions in their estate plan, as well as make arrangements for who will care for their pets when they die.
When people are interested in writing an estate plan, but worried they may miss something critical along the way, an attorney may help to alleviate some of that stress. With an attorney as part of their team, people can develop an estate plan that addresses each one of their needs.
Source: U.S. News, “5 Reasons to Make an Estate Plan,” Rodney Brooks, Oct. 18, 2019