A Woman’s Guide To Planning An Estate

Contributed article in our personal wealth series. Enjoy! – Kimberly

While estate planning is important for everyone, it’s especially crucial for women. Statistically, women have longer lifespans than men do, which means many women will outlive their husbands. This is why it’s vital that a woman takes the time to prepare for the future. This guide to planning an estate will help women think ahead and take the right precautions. 

Be Prepared To Adjust Your Will 

You and your spouse should work together to create a will that reflects your wishes for the future. However, even after a will is drawn up, you should remember that it isn’t set in stone. You may need to make changes to your will as your assets change, and you’ll also want to make adjustments if your spouse passes away. 

This doesn’t mean that you should put off creating a will. In fact, you should work with a lawyer to create a will as soon as possible, even if you’re still fairly young. Just make sure you don’t forget about your will and make changes to the document when necessary. 

Learn More About Trusts

While wills are an essential document, they can make it difficult for your loved ones to access your assets after you’ve passed away. In many cases, survivors will have to go through probate court, which can cost them time and money. 

If you’d like to save your loved ones from this burden, it’s a good idea to educate yourself on trusts and what they involve. It’s possible to place your property in a living trust, which will allow your loved ones to access your assets quickly if needed. 

Create A Health Care Directive 

It’s important to ensure that your wishes are respected when it comes to your health care, especially if you’re in a situation where you won’t be able to communicate what you want. A health care directive can serve as a living will. 

When you draft a healthcare directive, you can choose to give another person, like your spouse or one of your children, the right to make medical decisions on your behalf. If you do choose to do this, the party will only be able to make medical decisions if you are unable to do so. 

Look Into Life Insurance 

Statistically, you’re likely to outlive your spouse. However, it can still be highly beneficial to enroll in a life insurance policy, especially while you are still young and healthy. Life insurance can make it easier for your loved ones to cover funeral expenses after you pass on. 

Life insurance is also an excellent way to protect your children. You should strongly consider life insurance if you have a home you haven’t paid off yet. The payout from a life insurance policy can help your family members to make your mortgage payments. 

Keep All Of Your Documents Stored Safely 

You’ll need to make sure your attorney, the executor of your will, and your family members can easily access essential documents like:

* Your will 

* Trusts 

* Insurance policies 

* Property deeds 

* Bank account information 

* Retirement fund information 

Ideally, you should have more than one copy of essential documents. Make sure that people know where and how they can access these documents in the events of your passing. It is especially important for women to do this if they are the one that usually handles financial matters. 

Women should keep all of these things in mind when planning an estate. Estate planning can be complex, and women have a number of unique challenges that they need to overcome. With this advice, women will be prepared for what lies ahead.

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