Estate planning errors that can disrupt your vision of the future

On Behalf of | Jul 1, 2024 | Estate Planning And Administration |

Creating a thoughtful estate plan takes time. When you’re done with the process, you might feel proud of yourself and what you’ve accomplished. But after sitting with your estate plan for a little while you might want to revisit it to ensure that it’ll truly provide for your loved ones in the best way possible.

After all, there are some commonly made errors that estate planners don’t realize create problems for their loved ones and their estates once they’re gone. Let’s look at some of them so that you can turn a keen eye toward some of them that might exist in your set of circumstances.

Estate planning errors that jeopardize your vision of the future

Even if you’ve been careful to avoid some of the most common estate planning mistakes, you can still commit an error that jeopardizes your vision of the future and even leaves your loved ones in a difficult position. This includes the following:

  • Your family doesn’t know the location of important documentation: Your health might turn for the worse on a moment’s notice. If you haven’t informed your family where important estate planning and financial documentation is, and if you haven’t clarified who you want in charge of your decision-making in the event of incapacitation, then precious time can be lost sorting out the logistics of it all. This can lead to family members fighting and additional expenses being incurred.
  • You don’t inform your family of the extent of your estate: For whatever reason, many families are uncomfortable discussing their financial situation. If that’s the case for yours, then when you pass away your loved ones might become overwhelmed with managing your wealth, especially if you have more than they expected. You’re better off giving them a heads up on what to expect so that they can adequately prepare and aren’t overwhelmed or disappointed.
  • You fail to share your intentions: If you’re going to leave your assets to loved ones in an uneven fashion, then you should consider justifying your intent well beforehand. If you don’t, then your loved ones might be left confused and upset when your assets are distributed. You don’t want to leave your children, your spouse, or others you care about with that level of uncertainty.
  • You set unrealistic expectations for your loved ones: Most people who create an estate plan do so with genuine interest in giving their loved ones the lives they want for them. But sometimes your idea of what is important to your loved ones doesn’t align with their own wants and values. For example, if you leave a vacation property to a loved one who doesn’t want to vacation there or who doesn’t want to deal with the time, effort, and costs associated with maintaining the property, then your gift to them might feel more like a burden. So, it’s a good idea to discuss with your loved ones what you plan to do with your estate so that they can give honest feedback.

Create the estate plan that’s truly best for you, your estate, and your loved ones

Engaging in the estate planning process can be difficult for many reasons. But you have to embrace it if you want to set your loved ones up for the life that you envision for them and that they want. This will require attention to detail, an understanding of the law, and clarity as to what your loved ones want, though, which is why the sooner you can start planning the better.