Why your estate planning should begin when you’re a young adult

On Behalf of | Sep 26, 2019 | Probate and Estate Disputes

Many people don’t begin to think about estate planning until they’re nearing — or already in — retirement. However, younger adults are starting to see the advantages of at least beginning to build an estate plan. According to a survey by Caring.com, about a third of adults in their mid-30s to mid-40s have drafted a will. By putting in place just the documents you currently need at a young age, you can begin doing some planning for what you want to happen to you and your assets if you pass away or become incapacitated. Even people fresh out of college likely have some assets. If you don’t have a will, one Ohio tax professional with Zinner & Co. says that young people should be “making sure all their accounts have a beneficiary set up. This includes life insurance, retirement, and checking and savings accounts. Make sure all of those accounts have named beneficiaries and that they are updated for life and family changes.” Besides a will, even young adults should have a health care power of attorney that addresses who will make medical decisions for them if they’re unable to do so. Many young people assume that their parents can make those decisions. However, once they turn 18, their parents no longer automatically have the legal right to do so. If you get married, and certainly if you have children, you’ll need a more comprehensive estate plan. People who start their own businesses can help protect them via their estate plan as well. The tax professional advises, “Start as early as you can and set the groundwork for more complex planning that will come in the future. Laying the foundation now will mean less heartache and hassle for those left behind after you pass away.” An experienced estate planning attorney can help you put in place the documents you need based on your individual needs and goals. Then they can help you modify and add to those documents over the years as your life changes.