You may have decided to begin planning your estate so all your affairs are in order in the event you get sick or something unexpected happens. You may believe that you are able to complete your planning on your own because you might think you don't have the budget to hire a lawyer. This could end up being a costly mistake in the long run. There are some things you need to consider before you go on your own when planning your estate.
Knowing Estate Laws in Your State
In order to make your estate planning or will legal and valid in your state, you need to know what the estate laws are in your state. They can be very specific about what is allowed to be in your will and what you can't add to it and they will differ from each state.
You need to know what you can put into a medical or financial power of attorney and who can be appointed as a personal representative. There are also formalities that need to be observed when signing a will or power of attorney that you must know in order for it to be legal and valid.
It's not easy to figure out complex family or financial situations and apply them correctly when planning out your estate. For example, is this your second marriage or do you own your own business? Do you own real estate in more than one state? Do you have a dependant you take care of or a disabled relative? Do you want to leave a portion of your estate to charity and you have a specific amount in mind?
If you have a complex life it can make planning your estate more complicated and trying to fill out the forms on your own can mean major mistakes that can make your will invalid. Your family members might have to pay an estate planning attorney to fix costly mistakes later.
Protection From Creditors
It is possible that you might face a lawsuit or your estate will in the future because of unforeseen creditors. If you have assets such as a house or other investments you will need a comprehensive estate plan to protect those assets.
A lawyer will help you with a financial plan that is beneficial to you and your estate. And they can provide asset protection for your spouse through trusts as well any other benefactors you should name.