Some individuals in Kansas City may have made some steps towards creating an estate plan. However, without the right help, they may find themselves running into unexpected problems that could hurt them in the long run.

First of all, one mistake is simply not having an estate plan at all. You may think that the probate process will take care of handing your property down to your heirs after you die, so an estate plan is not necessary. However, probate is more complicated than many people think. First of all, probate can be costly, and it may take a long time for the probate process to be complete. Therefore, having an estate plan can help your loved ones after you die.

When creating an estate plan, you may need to choose someone to act as the executor of your estate. It is important to choose the right person to this type of roll. While you may want to a relative to serve as your executor, that relative may not be qualified to do so, or may not even want to do so in the first place. Make sure when you choose an executor that there are no conflicts of interest. Sometimes it may be a good idea to choose a professional to serve as executor of your estate. Once you establish your estate plan, let the executor of your estate know where your records are kept, and how the executor will be able to access these records.

Some people in Kansas City decide to create a trust as part of their estate plan. By using a trust, it may be possible to bypass the probate process. That being said, it is important to make sure that you place assets in the trust to fund it. Without funds, the trust is worthless. In addition, trust assets might need to be updated in the future. Similarly, it may be necessary in the future to change who is to be the beneficiary of the trust.

As you can see, estate planning is not always simple. It may help to have a legal professional be involved in the estate planning process. These individuals can give advice and guide a person through the estate planning process, so that an appropriate plan is reached.

Source: moneytips, “Three Biggest Mistakes in Estate Planning,” Bradford Creger, March 13, 2016

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