People often view the preparation of wills or trusts as something that older estate owners in Florida need to do. While this is true, everyone should consider estate planning as soon as they reach adult age. Even if a young person does not have any assets, official documents that name agents to handle financial affairs and address health care decisions might spare relatives from the delay and expense of petitioning a probate court.
Anyone who possesses assets might want to prepare a will and possibly a trust. Potentially, these documents will not be needed if the estate owner’s assets can pass to other parties via joint ownership or beneficiary designations. However, it’s wise to get a legal evaluation before making assumptions about asset transfer. Modern times have also introduced the concept of digital assets, which testamentary documents may address. Anything from a blog to a Facebook account might require estate planning so that an heir can control or terminate digital accounts.
For parents with minor children, it’s smart to name a guardian who could care for the kids if both parents pass away. Furthermore, assets inherited by the children might need someone to serve as a conservator. This individual would manage the assets outside of a trust. With the prevalence of pet ownership, an estate owner might also wish to declare who will take care of a pet and even provide funds for the animal’s upkeep.
By meeting with an estate planning attorney, one could gain insights about how to approach final arrangements for assets, children and pets. An attorney could research how to use wills or trusts to meet the client’s goals, potentially eliminate probate and protect heirs from creditors. Legal counsel could also write the necessary documents and provide guidance regarding decisions like choosing a trustee or selecting preferences for end-of-life care.