Another year is coming to a close in Texas and the new year is looming. With its approach people frequently review the past and consider plans for the future. Among those plans may be thoughts of estate planning. But what exactly does that entail and who should be concerned about it? Comprehensive estate plans are made up of more than last wills and testaments.
Estate planning, simply put, involves making plans for one’s family and belongings in the event of one’s death or serious injury. A will provides for what happens after one passes but what if a person becomes incapacitated? A durable financial power of attorney designates an individual who will be responsible for making financial decisions in the event the person becomes physically or mentally incapacitated. Likewise, a health care power of attorney designates a person who can act on a person’s behalf for medical decisions.
Other things to consider may involve insurance policies. Are there appropriate policies in place and are the beneficiaries appropriately designated? A recent divorce may mean that an ex-spouse is still named as a beneficiary on a life insurance policy, for example.
Estate planning should be as comprehensive as possible and may be complex. Making a list of goals to be accomplished with an estate plan is a good first step in Texas. An estate planning attorney with experience in crafting wills and other estate documents can help one look at the big picture and to ensure that most eventualities are provided for. Providing this security and protection for one’s self and one’s family can be an invaluable gift for the new year.