Estate Planning Tips for Singles

Estate Planning Tips for Singles

If you are single with no kids, an estate plan may not be at the forefront of your mind. Perhaps you have worked hard throughout your career and have diligently saved up money to enjoy relaxing vacations throughout your retirement. However, as you grow closer to retirement, it’s essential to get an estate plan in place.

Our skilled team of estate planning attorneys at Dana and Associates has been serving families and singles throughout Arizona and California for years, so we know a thing or two about the ins and outs of estate planning. To help you get started, we have rounded up some of the most important estate planning tips to keep in mind.

Here are the top 5 estate planning tips for singles:

  1. Create a Will

This is the heart of any solid estate plan. Your Will allows you to maintain control over the way that your assets are managed after you die. Without one, the courts would decide how to distribute your assets, which may not align with what you would have wanted.

Work closely with your attorney to ensure that your Will is done correctly and clearly specifies your wishes. You can write your Will today with our free Last Will and Testament Template.

  1. Designate a Power of Attorney

A Power of Attorney is something you may not think about when you are perfectly healthy. But, designating one is extremely important if you become incapacitated. For example, a Power of Attorney would come into play if you were in an accident, fell into a coma, or developed dementia.

This is the person who would make financial decisions on your behalf if you are unable to do so on your own. They could step in to take care of your bills, rent, mortgage, and more while you recover.

  1. Select Beneficiaries

Selecting beneficiaries for your Will is a deeply personal process that you should take time to plan for. While people with families typically name their spouse or children as beneficiaries, the decision is often more challenging for single people.

You can name one beneficiary or as many as you like. Beneficiaries for single people could include a charity you are particularly fond of, nieces and nephews, close friends, or even a business partner. It’s essential to get it ironed out in your Will; otherwise, generic state intestate laws will distribute your assets. Typically first to your parents, then siblings and so on. However, if the state finds no family to claim your estate, all of your assets go to the state.

  1. Create and Fund a Revocable Trust

A Revocable Trust enables you to specify how your assets will be handled throughout your lifetime, as well as how they should be distributed after your death. As the primary beneficiary of your Revocable Trust, you can change the instructions and add or remove assets as you see fit.

It’s important to select a successor trustee and fund your Revocable Trust while you are alive and well. This allows you to ensure that your assets could be used to fund your care if you become incapacitated, and it will allow your beneficiaries to avoid probate court once you have passed.

  1. Plan for Estate Taxes

If the value of your estate exceeds a certain amount, estate taxes can hit hard and greatly reduce the amount that you hope to leave to your beneficiaries. Depending on the state you live in, there are ways to lessen the blow.

If you’re worried about estate taxes, make sure you work with your attorney to find out the best way for you to reduce the tax on your estate.

Top Estate Planning Attorneys in Arizona

Estate Planning Tips for SinglesIt’s never too early to get started on the estate planning process. The first step is getting in touch with an experienced estate planning attorney to assist you through the journey.

At Dana and Associates, we work to simplify the process for our clients and ensure that your estate plan is customized to your specific needs. Contact us today to get in touch with one of our top estate planning attorneys in Arizona!