Don’t Have an Estate Plan? Here’s 3 Reasons You Need One
Estate planning is one of those activities many Marylanders tend to put off until they are older or at least until they are retired. However, this is often a big mistake.
It’s important to place focus on your estate long before you enter retirement.
Regardless of how big your savings are or how young you are, estate planning is a smart way to secure the future health and safety of your family.
What Is Estate Planning?
Even if you don’t think you have many assets, the fact is, you have an estate. Your estate is made of everything you own – so if you own any of the following, they comprise your estate:
- Real estate
- Life insurance
- Virtually any personal possessions
No matter how modest your estate is, something will happen to it when you pass on – and you want to have a say in what happens to your estate.
Estate planning in Maryland is a wise way to protect your family and your assets. It involves making a plan in advance for who should receive what in the event of your death. A good estate plan protects your family when you are no longer there to do so.
Why You Need an Estate Plan in Maryland
There are plenty of excuses for not making an estate plan. However, for every reason not to, there are many for why you should. Consider the following reasons why estate planning is a good choice for you:
1. Simplify Matters for Your Heirs
If you die without an estate plan, your estate falls under the jurisdiction of the state to distribute according to law to your heirs. In these cases, your estate is often subject to excess fees and delays. This means your family doesn’t get your full estate – and this could be a problem if they depended on your support.
While probate in Maryland is not onerous, the delay in receiving one’s inheritance can be avoided with proper planning.
An estate plan can help minimize probate. Solidifying your Maryland estate plans with a skilled lawyer could lead to avoiding probate altogether, so your family gets exactly what they deserve.
2. Protect Your Beneficiaries
Every state has different laws regarding what happens to someone’s possessions upon his or her death. While the assets almost always stay in the family, each state has a different prioritization of who should receive what.
If you fail to create an estate plan, Maryland will divvy up your estate according to these laws – and your beneficiaries may not be as protected as you would like.
With an estate plan in place, you can specify where your estate goes and how it should be divided up. You can ensure your assets remain in your family, rather than having your children, parents, siblings, etcetera miss out on your estate due to an estranged spouse and/or outdated will.
3. Reduce Estate Tax
Dying without an estate plan may mean your estate will be subject to high estate tax. The state of Maryland could take assets you had intended to go to your family or a chosen charity by imposing hefty estate taxes.
The best strategy is to create an estate plan. You can avoid high estate taxes, and protect your family from legal and financial strife.
Even with small estates, estate planning can be complex, and one wrong move can mean your belongings may not go to those you intended. You need Dilip Paliath, an experienced estate planning attorney in Maryland, to guide you through this process. Contact him today to schedule an estate planning consultation.