BJohn R. Lanzaenefits of estate planning in New Jersey

Estate planning is often associated with older, wealthier individuals. However, estate planning is beneficial for everyone, including young adults living in New Jersey.

What is estate planning? Estate planning is a way to document how a person's assets will be distributed upon his or her death. An estate plan can also address other issues including who will manage a person's finances or care for his or her children if they pass away before the children become adults.

Estate planning does not need to complicated. One of the most basic parts of an estate plan is creating a will. In a will, a person will name an executor who will be responsible for distributing your assets and carry out your wishes after you have passed away. For people with children, a will can also name a guardian to care for your children. These are two very important issues to address in a will, because if a guardian is not named, the state's court system establishes who will be the guardian for the child.

When determining who to appoint as your child's guardian, it is important to consider who will be a good fit to care for your child and discuss the decision with this person or couple before naming them as a guardian in the will. The same goes for naming an executor for your will. This person will be responsible for handling your assets and financial decisions once you are gone so want someone who is reliable and trustworthy.

An estate plan can address many different issues that impact a person's life, including financial and health care decisions. Estate plans are very beneficial for many different reasons. However, if people are unsure of what they should include in his or her estate plan or don't want to create different estate planning documents, at the very least you should have a will.

Individuals interested in creating a will and other estate planning documents should contact an estate planning attorney to discuss the specific steps to take to start the process and understand their options.

Source: CBS Boston, "Estate Planning Is Key To Financial Planning," Dee Lee, May 3, 2013

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