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5 key estate planning steps

Writing a will and drafting an estate plan is something that you want to take very seriously. It has a drastic impact on your family after you pass away.

With that in mind, here are five key steps:

  • Choose who you want to leave your assets to. These individuals are your beneficiaries. It is best to name them specifically and lay out exactly which assets they will receive.
  • Pick the person who will make sure it happens. This is the executor. They will be in charge of handling your affairs and distributing your assets in accordance with the will.
  • Don't give any vague directions. Doing so can cause disputes when people do not agree on exactly what you meant or what you wanted.
  • If you still have children who are under 18 years old, choose a guardian for them. This needs to be someone you trust. This person can act as a parent and raise them if need be. They can also help them with assets if you don't want to leave what you own directly to minors.
  • Set up a plan to update your will. It may be as simple as saying that you will check it over once a year. You definitely want to update it after major events like a marriage or a divorce. Always make sure that your estate plan reflects what you truly want.

These five key steps can help you get started, but remember that you have many options. It's important to explore them all so that you can find out exactly what will be best for your family.

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