Are you between age 40 and 55? If yes, then congratulations. Research has shown that you are in your peak earning years.
Chances are good that you have some expensive life events going on right now, unlike when you were among the married couples without children. Do you have children who are college-bound or already there? Do you have a wedding scheduled (or one or more down the road)? Perhaps you are beginning to help aging parents with personal, health care and financial responsibilities.
Can you say Sandwich Generation?
I know you may be busy and are likely tired, very tired. Don’t let that be an excuse to put of your estate planning, you simply can’t afford the extra stress that comes along with failing to plan.
You Must Plan for Incapacity
Did you know the law requires every adult American to make his or her own personal, financial and health care decisions? Who would make your basic decisions if you are legally incapacitated due to a serious injury or illness?
Unless you legally appoint the decision-maker of your own selection in advance through proper estate planning, then a probate judge will select one for you. The probate court process to accomplish this (referred to as a conservatorship) is lengthy and expensive, discloses your private personal and financial information to the public record, and is a real hassle for your loved ones.
You Aren’t Invincible
We have to face the reality that we will all die at some point. Did you know that in the absence of proper estate planning, your assets may be distributed after death based on default state laws written for people who do not have their own estate plan? Of course, this impersonal estate plan written by state lawmakers may not reflect your own unique circumstances and objectives for your loved ones and assets. It also often involves a court process called probate, a burdensome, public, expensive process to transfer property out of deceased person’s name.
There is a Better Way
Fortunately, we can help you avoid probate court, plan for incapacity, and replace that impersonal, state-written, one-size-fits-all estate plan with one we design together for your unique circumstances and objectives. We even help you coordinate the beneficiary designations on your life insurance and retirement plans with your estate plan to avoid unpleasant, unintended consequences, and make sure everything flows together in an integrated fashion.
Protecting Assets for the Next Generation
When it comes to your children, great care should be given to protect any inheritance both for them and from them. For starters, wealth representing a lifetime of your hard work and thrift can be squandered in very short order. Dollars earned just spend differently than dollars inherited. In addition to squandering, an inheritance can quickly vanish through divorces, lawsuits and bankruptcies. We can help arrange for your assets to be distributed to your children or grandchildren through an inheritance trust to protect them from the potential pitfalls that come along with inheriting wealth and property.
“Insure” Peace of Mind
Are your parents already in or considering a transition to some form of long-term care? If yes, have you noticed how expensive the continuum of care is? From in-home assistance to assisted living to skilled nursing the expenses can destroy savings and investments created over a lifetime of hard work and thrift.
Your peak earning years are the perfect time to lock-in a long-term care insurance policy while you are still able to qualify physically and mentally. Some versions of coverage only pay if you need long-term care assistance, but others can now do double-duty and turn into life insurance if you do not need such assistance. That is a popular alternative to traditional long-term care insurance.