If the thought of lacking substantial wealth is the only issue preventing you from processing a comprehensive estate plan, think again. An estate plan is as much about organizing your financial portfolio as leaving your affairs exactly how you intend them to be when you pass on.
Even if you don’t have considerable money or assets, you’d still want to manage any property you might have, despite how trivial you assume they are. The most fundamental estate plan tool for this is a will, indicating your wishes about your properties – homes, cars, bank balances, businesses, investments, retirement plans, collections, heirlooms and even mementos. You can also specify how you would like your children cared for, if you have any. Without a will, or dying intestate, gives Maryland law the controlling authority to handle your properties and other relevant decisions.
Thus, no matter your financial capacity, or even age and marital status, estate planning protects you in ways you might not realize.
Why estate planning is also for you
To ease your worries, here are some reasons why you must proceed with estate planning:
- Maryland law has several exemptions for taxation. For example, inheritance tax doesn’t apply if the inheritance is less than $1,000, and either your spouse, child, parent or grandparent inherits the property.
- The value of your prized possessions may be much higher than you think. Even a generational family treasure may be more than expected.
- There are other components of estate planning. Medical or financial powers of attorney allow you to designate agents acting on your behalf during incapacitation or death. Advanced directives also work similarly through appointed agents making health care or end-of-life decisions when you can’t communicate your wishes anymore.
Ultimately, an estate plan paints a clear picture of what to do with what you have while you still can and how that can safeguard your family’s future.
Let your legacy live on
It will help if you break the misconception that estate planning is exclusively for the rich and privileged. You may find clarity by consulting with your legal representative about all possible courses of action based on your financial circumstances.